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  CSPAN    C-SPAN Weekend    News/Business.  

    September 12, 2010
    1:00 - 5:59pm EDT  

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have to ask yourself, do we really respect education? do we respect educators? do we think the intellectual pursuit is really something that is an important point? if you think about it, we do not. if you turn on television, it is not appealing to really intelligent people. what we have to do, first of all, is to say that the intellect is important. it is a goal. you all know this. there are kids out there who are bright, curious, who want to do well in school. you know what? they are afraid because their friends will think they are nerds. . .
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secondly, i'll tell you last year i was honored to bring an true parker home right here in this local community. i was on the committee with the parade and we raise 200,000 dollars for him. now how was i able to do that? 11 years ago, my wife had a traumatic injury, so we lost everything we had. and i became her full-time care giver she had two brain surgeries. now for eight years she's been receiving disability medicare and this year her medication was denied. it was denied by an organization called max must. i am her care giver and i apologize. i had to appeal for her.
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now this is a letter we got from maxim u.s. we're federal services. experts on appeals. medicare hired us to review this file and decide if the partd plan made the correct decision. we work for medicare. we do not work for part-d plan. we appealed and my wife won wholly. so the administrative law judge process. maxim u.s. has appealed that a decision and they say according to the term medically accepted indication includes only fda uses and those off dated uses supported by citation on one of the listed drugs. more over, medically accepted indication does not including
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treating physician testimony or proffer of medical efforts showing a drug as prescribed effectively treats the condition for which it's being used. converse easily could have included expert testimony as a source material for determining medically accepted uses if he wanted to do so. instead congress by reference to a drugs fda label and expert opinions in one of several drug. accordingly. medical accept the use is not the same as medically necessary. >> i would like to, we worked on issues like that so. we could be of help to you. >> senator sanders thank you very much for your time. by the way, i should have mentioned, we have a number of
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excellent caseworkers in burling to be. they've helped many people on medicare, housing, veterans and you name it if you know of anybody who you think could use our help. don't hesitate to have them give us a ring. >> i'm curt. for the last years i've been a science high school teacher and i'd like to disagree with some of the things that the gentlemen said about education earlier. it's certainly true the economic competitiveness depends on a good educational system. i wish i could say i thought the quality is doing well as you suggest. it's not been my experience in the last six years however that's the case. my school is a small one and we have about 250 students and in the last six years i've been teaching there i feel academic performance is going down.
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i think this is a thing that's people and teachers there long after me has been going on with. schedule change on how we run our school there was dramatic drop off in performance. administrators and school board and teachers not interesting in listening to the data and how students are doing. as educator i was an engineer at ibm for 20 years and people in any group including this group i work with, 30 people are all decent people. they're all well-intentioned but like all people, they respond to how their measured and in fact, i could not get anyone in the last two years interested dealing with the problems schedule changes created. i think we need educational system where teachers are measured based on performance of students. through test scores or some other measurable metric.
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if we were a business with no emphasis on quality like this appears to be, we were or would fail. i like to support the idea of race to the top that an obama administration is s pursuing. i think it's embarrassing the state is not choosing to try some of these educational reform issues. we're not headed in the right direction and i have six years of personal experience to prove it. >> thank you, sir. >> i'm sandy. my concern is with the way our health care institutions operate. how socialized medicine different than our united states system when people have to wait for months to even get a
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consultation appointment with a surge again and have to wait longer to get the procedure done. people have to resort to coming to the, er and wait hours only to be told it has to be a life or death situation to be admitted. who determines the criteria for hospitalization. the insurance company? when a person sent home with a prescription and said, is there any wonder that our society has become so drug dependent. shame on our government to allow this heinous treatment. insurance companies are dictate together doctors on how to care for people's health. it's wrong for hospitals to not go to institutions to people can be treated humanely. thank you. >> thank you. [plus]
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>> my name is rachel and i want to thank you for your comments about education and the need for curiosity and what needs to happen for the country. i wanted to ask you to speak a bit about funding. federal funding and what you're aware of and what's going on in the state. i have to pause and respond to the gentlemen in rich ford. i teach at people's academy with a staff that seems somewhat different from your is where people choose to take on professional development and i very concerned about some of your ideas for measurement of teachers. >> i mean, just - let me just say a word about education. we were at a meeting this morning and a teacher there a principal. i don't remember which was
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telling how upset she were they had a budget vote in town and there was some people there who were just ripping into teachers and into the schools and she felt the kids were picking up the vibes and were feeling very awkward and bad seeing their own teachers being attacked. what we have in this state and many parts of this country is a very regressive and unfair way of funding education. what do i mean? if you have a town or virtually any town where people don't have a lot of money. they've lost jobs. you're an old person living in a house and your property taxes are coming up and someone said we need a 10% increase in the school budget. what are you going to say? are you antikid? no. you don't have the money. so you see community after community, people really coming at logger heads with each other.
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good people. teachers and parents say our kids need a good education and all the people are working. i can't afford higher property taxes. so what's the answer? the answer is we have to break out the dependency on the property tax. we need - you know, i our schools need to be run in a cost effective way. not suggesting you throw money at the schools but they need to be run cost effectively but we should not split communities apart because of people in bad economic conditions are forced to vote against higher property taxes. >> hi. i'm jordan and i'm a full-time college student and i wanted to ask what steps have you taken or plan to hell top help college students out with financial aid.
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it's expensive. i know i'm from out of state but in state too. i don't know if anybody has a college student at college state it's just expensive and the burden that students and parents take on is outrageous and we're losing more and more grants every year. >> jordan? let me ask you a question. if you lived in germany or finland how much would you want to go to college? >> 0. >> the answer is that many countries around the world see the education of our young people as an investment in the future. as an investment in the future and i agree with that. i think college should be available at every family in this country regardless of income. i this is absurd that young people are leaving schools. deeply, deeply in debt that
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means their choice of career is predetermined if your leaving 50,000 in debt you're not going to be a child care worker. you're going to gravitate to wall street and so forth. what do we need to do? say as we have discussed we need the best educational system in the world and we want to encourage as many people as possible to get the quality of education they stus stain regardless of income. we do not want to see kids graduate 30 to 50,000 in debt. what we've done are a couple of things. increases the pell grant program. the major federal source of scholarships or grant programs to working and lower income families. we need to substantially increase that as well. what we've also done is say if you choose to go into public service and choose to work you know, for the environmental group or veterans or government
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where you want to be a teacher or a police officer. if you do that for a 10-year period the remainder of your debt will be forgiven. we want you in public service. a step forward but we should be doing more than that. >> thank you. [applause] >> i have a nine word question. how can we reform our corrupt campaign finance system. >> well, we live in one of the smallest states in vermont. in the united states. state of ve month. we have 638 thousand people. in the small state i had to raise 5 million dollars and i was out spent by $2,000,000 so. what you have, if you're in
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california now, if all over the country you're in a big state. people that are millionaires and billion theirs are running for office that are tens of millions of dollars to sustain a campaign so. your moving toward a situation that if you want to run for office you have to be wealthy yourself that most of us are not or go to big money interests and say write me the checks and i'll work for you. that's not what democracy is about and the citizens united made a bad situation worse. you think those of us who have stood off the wall street or drug companies are not going to be paid back in spades with all kinds of campaign attacks by the same institution? of course we will. what's the answer? the answer is public funding of elections. that's the answer.
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the answer is - and in vermont we've made some steps but not enough. but the answer is, it's absurd just because someone has a million as a wealthy person can out spend somebody else 10/1. someone wants to proximate to special interests they get all kinds of money they can get an elected in democracy society everybody should have an equal chance. there should be a certain amount of money people can spend. and you have to move on that aggressively. we're moving toward a situation where the wealthy and powerful are the only's ones with voice in government. we'll take many - maybe two more questions. >> my name is christopher myers.
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since i was 14 and i'm out of work now and i'm homeless because i can't find any work. and this is going to be probably a pretty hard winter for me. since i'm going to be outside in it. and i don't find any help for people like me. >> first of all. at the end of the we'll see how we manage with times. perhaps we can do something. thank you. >> last question. >> i appreciate very much your being here and your political philosophy, i've spent the past 27 years working with the united nations that i was formally a veteran from the korean war and i've had a chance to see what's going on in different countries and i'm now back here living full-time. i've had children living he here and i read the news and have
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different perspectives. i've had two major concerns you probably share. one is with what's doing on now with the elections and what might happen with republicans having more power and some of the dysfunction taking place in congress right now and some concerns about obama, who i did vote for. i'm taking a look what's happening in afghanistan and i'm taking a look at what's happening right now in the united states in terms of all of the concerns that people have expressed and you have expressed and how the money is being misused and used and in places like afghanistan and i'm certainly supporting the troops but i'm concerned about what appears to be the lack of control that both obama and can only have so much control but also congress and where they're prioritizing on how to keep more
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money here with the billion spend in afghanistan in a corrupt country beyond the belief of corruption. do you have thoughts to share? >> i do. thanks for your question. the truth of the matter is, and i don't mean to be partisan. this is a senate town meeting. but, the facts are pretty clear. let me lay them out. and i don't think my republican friends would deny this. after obama became elected they made a political decision to appose virtually every piece of legislation that he brought forth. wall street reform. stimulus packet or whether it was health care and it's got a dozen other pieces. what we've seen is more filibusters. some of you know that, in the senate it's not majority rules.
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we had a majority. historically the filibuster that's not 60 votes was used rarely. now with the republicans have done is use it for virtually every single piece of major legislation so we've seen more filibusters in the last year and a half than any time in the history of the united states senate. i can give you absurd examples in the you dish rare committee where they deal with jumps. you got a unanimous vote for judge, then it's held up and delayed. month after month after month and comes through and wins the jump wins 98-2 or something like that. i brought forth another proponent of a single payer program and i brought forth legislation that was not going to win. thought we would get maybe 7 or 8 votes.
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a republican said your bringing that forward and i'll have the read all 700 pages of the bill that would take 1500 hours. the majority of the leader would move on to something else. you seeing obstructionism. if obama wants something they will float it up and frankly, it's good politics. i think it's working for them. it's bad for the american people and economy and our kids, but it's policy. and i think that's unfortunate. to answer that part of the question, i think we need changes in rules so that you don't similar my have a situation where today. president-elect i'd the people wants to do something. the house wants to do something. strong majority in the senate want to do something and we can't because 41 people out of a 100 say no. that's not democratic and we have to reform that. in terms of afghanistan, you
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know? i share many of your concerns. our guys and women there now are doing what has to be done and you know, this state has just a huge contingency. 1500 men and women over there. more than any state in the united states of america. you all know the price we paid in iraq. we lost more soldiers than any other state and you know what's happening now and the recent change diwe've experienced. difficulty there is your dealing with a government that's largely corrupt and not respected by it's own people. i think what the mission that our national guard is on is what we have to do. to train the eye rack military and their own police forces to defend themselves. we can't do it for them. they have to do it for
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themselves. my view is as soon as we can. we're working on it now. i think we've got to start bringing home our troops from afghanistan. let me do this. let me conclude by mostly thanking all of you for being out here. this is a great discussion and i thank you for all of your really good questions. are there a couple of people to meet with that i want to help them. thank the panelists for being here but for the work each and one of these folks are doing every day. and again i want to thank thev fw to allow us to use this beautiful hall. thank you very much. thank you all! [applause]
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>> on news makers. michael consistent treasury secretary for tax policy takes about president obamas tax proposals and what may happen with the bush administrations tax cuts. news makers today at 6 profit margins eastern on c-span.
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presentive joe bonner in his fourth term presents the first district of alabama. he takes questions interest of local residents effected by the oil spill by his local town hall. this is about an hour and ten minutes. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> i've learned the value of loyalty in the political arena. it's rare. but i want you to know something. congressman bar is my friend. he's my buddy. he's been there for us. not me, but us in every battle i've had and all i had to do was
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pick the phone up. and he took care of business. it means a lot to me and i hope it means a lot to you guys. he has done that for us. so, without furth a due, i'd like to welcome honorable joe bonner. thank you for being here, sir. >> thank you. [applause] >> thank you, mayor. thanks to the people of orange beach, pleasure island for coming out. i want to return the favor. our world changed in a very real way on april 20th. as we all know we've lived through hurricane seasons and recovered from hurricane seasons but as news broke there had been a tragedy out in the gulf of mexico on deep water horizon none of us could have image inned what the next months would
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bring. this community, this island under the leadership of mayor kenan and craft. state leadership and local leadership and country leadership has been with one voice in solidarity to make sure this tragedy did not go unnoticed guy president of the united states or people at the highest levels of corporate america. we're so blessed to have mayor kenan leading this community. thank you. >> well, it's good to be back. this time last year when we were here, there were no seats in the room because the topic was health care and it was a topic that continues until we went back in section and continues into christmas and new years and as you know the president got his way and the congress eventually passed the bill and
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it now has been signed into law. but a lot has happened here on the fifth anniversary of hurricane katrina. as we celebrate, i think we should celebrate the fact that they have capped the well. it's not permanent yet but we have every reason to believe it will and yet you can't celebrate without being mindful that the last 120 plus day have taken a toll unlike anything we've seen or experienced. today, in addition to having a town meeting. this is the last town meeting we've scheduled for this week. i think we're at 12 or 13. i'm not sure. but it's appropriate that we're finishing up here in orange peach and especially appropriate to the people of this community that we welcome a national audience. c-span will be televising and replaying this townhall meeting
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so if you didn't have a chance to put on your powder. don't worry, i didn't either. i say that not to make anyone nervous about asking a question or making a comment, but just to let you know when you have a question or comment, we'll ask you to raise your hand and they'll bring a microphone so you'll have a chance to have your question heard by citizens throughout this country. when we do town hall meetings like this. i always start out with a couple of words of thanks. i say this from the bottom of my heart. thank you for the privilege of working for you. your my suppose. you and 635 thousand other people that live in the first congressional district. thanks for coming out today to ask a question or offer a comment. in the event you came out because you need our help, that's good too. i've got people in my office, they're in the back.
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rachel chisser is in the corral colored dress. bryan parker is in sear sucker. they work in our baldwin county office and brooks too lives in baldwin county. if you need our help and want to talk about something or help and you don't want it on c-span then we'd love to have a chance to get the information from you so that we can go to work on your behalf. a couple more things you might have a question that you not only want c-span not to televise but you don't want your husband or wife to know you asked, we have some cards and if you would like to put a question down, you can and it to me. and i'll call you back. in fact i'll call you probably on the way over. i had a man yesterday at a town meeting that we had in brootn
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did- his wife was in the hospital and normally she came to town meetings and he thought it be nice if i called her. i said sir, as unpopular as congress is i might put her in a state of heart attack if i called her but i did if you want me to call your or respond o to a matter privately i'm happy to do that. last but least, we also have some links to our website for two programs that we are participating in. america speaking out and giving you an opportunity to not just tell me as your congressman but the entire congress. republican and democratic leadership what your concerned about and what you'd like to see done as it relates to the direction of our country. we'd love to give you addresses and hear from you in a number of different ways. one more word of thanks and this
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was not something i had necessarily planned on but i want to do this because i mean it. there's a young man here a resident of this community. he spent a year and a half of his time and money going door-to-door trying be your congressman and i want to recognize peter, who deserves a lot of thanks for what he tried to do. he and his wife have a beautiful little baby. he just took his first step. and, the problems we face as a nation, aren't going to be solveed d.c. they're going to be solveed towns like this one. while peter and i ran for the same job, we didn't run against each other. you never heard anything negative or add verse and i really mean this and i think mayor will agree and i know the
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coucilmembers will agree. you should tip your hat when someone is willing to put their life and family on hold to ask for the opportunity and privilege to work for you. peter. thank you for being here. please tell your wife and son we appreciate them. i come to orange beach knowing there's a lot of concern about what's happened over the last few months. i'm getting ready to go to your question or comment. but very briefly, i think it is safe to say, based on the other communities i visited and other comments i received. many people, most people are concerned about what's going on with your country. concerned about the direction that we're going in. . the amount of money we're borrowing and spending. and so where it's borrowing too much from china and other countries. putting a burden or mortgage on
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our future or the a burden on the back of our grandchildren these are serious challenges facing us. someone in washington would have you believe that the recovery is here. that they actually call it a recovery summer and happy days were here again. i would have a hard time going to monroe in our district with 27 percent unemployment. i would be hard-pressed to go to monroe county and say good times are here again. most people would think i've lost my behind. i believe with all my heart that her are solutions out there. not popular or easy but there are solutions out there that the challenge is going to be for washington to heart listening to america and for your elected representatives and senators and the president, to start listening to the concerns and
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frustrations and fears and hopes of the american people. so again, i came today to say thank you for the privilege to present you. i would love to take compliments and comments and questions and ideas or suggestions. in fact. yes, sir? >> i have a question about our local concerns about the bp. is there any firm guidelines that you all have issued to the rental vacation agencies? and the private owner rental people for tourism? is there any firm advice given to them that they are to out of the money they get pay a certain amount for lodgings tax? >> we've not given any advice on that effect. but i will tell you that there
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was discussion on where the funding made available first by bp and now mr. feinberg's group if terms of compensation would be taxable. the internal revenue system has reminds us it is. in terms of taxing that would be something more the local level. is that right, major? >> yes. if they pay us our revenue as they should then they should not be response to be able pay taxes. because we're getting that from bp. not yet, but that's the goal. >> the reason i ask is because of that answer. people that collect moneys from tourism automatically have to pay a percent of lodgings tax to the state and then the state redistributes to the county. municipalities and the bureau. if there's confusion on who
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isn't doing what there may be redundancy in claims that find berg can say if you folks don't have your act together why should i pay you until we know that you know that the state should get a certain percent of the moneys you got lodging tax. that doesn't count sales tax for people in business. they're now saying i don't sell as many hotdogs and hamburgers. that's an issue. i understand you've all talked about federal tax. now i'm trying beat the state to get their moneys from them so that they don't get confused as to who does what to whom. >> it's a great question. the first time it's come up in the meeting but it probably should have been something we should have been bringing up because it's a very fair question. i hate to muddy the water but i'm going to tell you in my view the water is mu did by the
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attorney general of alabama filing suit against bp. now there may be a time that we might have to file against bp but the attorney general did not, correct me if i'm wrong. i don't think he called the mayor of orange beach or any of these towns and said, hey guys. what do you think? and unfortunately, by filing the suit preemptively. the feinberg account. theest skroe account to create the 20 billion dollars that's not for government reimbursement. i actually wished it had been more money put into it. i wish it had been a one-stop shop that communities would be able to file claims under new system. that was not agreed to and so, as a result. governor riley was leading
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negotiations with bp to make orange beach, gulf shores and baldwin county school systems and others whole, the best of our ability to determine what the losses have been. some of that from lodging tax and those negotiations have basically come to a chilling halt. so that is an added frustration. i don't think the mayor can tell you now what the state is going to be able to do. those negotiationses are on hold right now. my only plea to the attorney general would be. i'm not a lawyer but i've always believeed a lawyer had to have a client to present. i don't know if he's refused to consult with the local mayor's or county or state leaders or governor it makes me wonder while he's filing this suit at this particular time. we may need to su bp but florida
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and mississippi and louisiana have not filed so i wish we could have let the governor negotiate on be half of the communities and counties and i think we could have given you a more definite answer to your question. i hope we're able to get that resolved but i fear the lawsuit will be an impediment. i'll be happy to look into it further to get additional information. captain? >> congress map, we always appreciate you coming and visiting us and thanks so much for helping our fishing community. one of our concerns is seafood safety. it's perception among a lot of people, when our red snapper season was announced last friday i had a phone call from a gentlemen and his first question he asked me was, captain, will you eat the fish and i said,
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absolutely. i have no doubt that the fish is safe. he calls back and says. our groups kind of concerned and we're not going to come right now. we're going to wait. this is going to be an issue that will continue to be one that we're going to have to deal with and - what i'm asking for is that we need your help to get the message out that the seafood is safe. a lot of people are questioning whether the fda and others are doing a good job. what i'd like on opening day of red snapper season is for you to come down and go fishing with us and enjoy some red snapper and that will be a wonderful way for our community to be able to give our nation, hey, we're open for business. >> well i can't think of a better invitation and i don't know when it is.
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but i promised you unless there is something that i cannot get out of, i'll be there with you on opening day and promise you i will not only eat it but i'll enjoy it. >> we look forward to being able to do this and anything you can do to kind of help this issue along. we're really concerned about it. >> you know, captain, you are concerned because you see what this has done to the economy, your business and your colleagues and friends and may worse and families. one of the concerns that i have to your point is, i think the seafood is safe. i've eaten, look at me and tell. i've not pushed away from the crab or shrimp although the oysters have got energy so expensive it's hard to afford there but there is a concern in the behinds of not just residents but all across the
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country because there's so little confidence in government right now. how many people have - remember just a few days ago we heard from noah and e.p.a. that 75 percent of the oil is disappeared. how many people believe that? i hope it has. i hope that's we're doing testing that we prove it has disappeared and it's gone. but there's so little confidence. congress has a 12, 13% approval rating and the president is higher but there's a lot of people that think if the government says it, u you can trust it's not true. you're right. we have to do a good job of convincing the me american peop. not only is it safe and delicious but the beaches are safe. that's one of the challenges the mayor has and the chamber of commerce has. has how do we go through the
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worst environmental man made crisis in the history of america and have credibility when we tell people taylor hicks is on t.v. right now asking people to come back. we want them back. but we have to also maker is time we're shooting straight with the american people. our credibility is on the line. i had an opportunity to meet with a group of people from arkansas and from texas. they are doing an ice cream parlor. my wife and i had been in orange beach every weekend but one since april 20th or since school got out and there was a recognized the guy from texas pause he had along horns shirt and i asked him if he heard the outcome of the rose bowl game, but i went over and thanked him and said i'm a local official and thanks for coming. i tell you he said something whether going on the fishing
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boats or playing on the golf courses or playing in the water it's something near and dear. chamber of commerce moment. he said we love orange beach. this is where we want to come and bring our family and we're going to keep going. i don't know when the opening day is, but if i'm not there then i'll be there during the fall season and i want to be out and tell the worldcom on back. this is not only some place that we love but we love to share it with others. >> we really look forward to you coming and appreciate that. if i can one thing. i want to thank you for your support on the funding so that the fish stock assessments can be done correctly. it really helped our fishing community out. thank you. >> thank you very much. >> october first is your opening day.
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>> well my district director says she's going to be there whether i'm there or not. captain as unpopular as congress is if you found out you had a member of congress on your boat you would probably have people bribe you to push me off and let me be the bait. but i'd love to be there. again, the fishing community especially, the entire area has felt it. there's no community of the community that is felt it more personally than your community has. and i want you to know that your colleagues and families and friends have been in our prayers every day. yes, ma'am? >> would it be better if i stand? i have a question about the program. i would like some business people and i fisherman may need
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this program. people that supplied so far from modification same to be styled with the blenders. some of these people have waited six months from lenders and in the meantime they're homes are for closed on. i don't think these lenders are acting in good faith. i have two questions to ask you about this. >> tell everyone what the program is. >> the help program is set up for homeowners and now even homeowners that pay their mortgages every month if you've had a drop in income and you can't afford to make your monthly payment but you could if they reduced your interest rates two or 3%, the government, president barack obama has asked the lenders look at this and if you can afford to do it, they'll do it for you.
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i don't know if the government supplements the lenders but it keeps people from losing they're homes but i think people need help with this because i don't think the lenders want to do it if i was i probably wouldn't want to either but people need help. what's congress doing to encourage lenders to move forward right now? >> let me - i wrote your question down but i want to touch on something to the heart of your question but is also much broader than that. there are a lot of banks here. i would argue that do want to loan and keep credit flowing, especially to customers that they have been working with and have considered business partners. for years or decades. but i think what is happening
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even if the president in good faith is saying to the treasury department and the federal reserve and f dic, you need to loosen up the regulations and give some oxygen to these lending institutions so they can turn around and lend. i don't think that's happening. a few nights ago here in the country there were 550 community bankers having dinner. brian parker from the office and i were invited to join, not just the bankers but some people from the fdic and federal reserve and the treasury department. they were down from washington. some in from the atlanta office. the annual appraisal is another dagger into an already fragile real estate system. that was bad before.
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before april 20th. it was bad on april 19th. ya'll know this and i'm not telling you anything you don't know. and then along comes the oil spill and it becomes worse. folks from federal government were say together the bankers. lend the money we'll give you breathing room. but then we got out and talked to the bankers one-on-one. they were saying we can't afford to lend because the regulators and examiners were putting a gun to our head saying you lend to this company or this individual we're going to strike it against you and your going to be on the hook and be liable. now, i just came from gulf shores. this question came up at a meeting i had down there. mayor craft, mayor kenan and others sent a strong message. mayor craft came up and testified before the house financial services committee. and i had been led to believe
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that the chairman and the ranking republican of the committee. franklin d. roosev they are sending a strongly lettered word to the treasury department and f dic. if we want the economy, nationally to recover, we're going to have to give some breathing room to some of these lending institutions down here along the gulf coast because it's getting desperate. i don't have a copy of that letter yet but i'll make one available to the mayor and you and or anyone else that would like it. your exactly right. these programs are only good if they're being used to benefit individuals that in this instance are credit worthy. but they're being suffocated because of the regulation. not coming from elected officials. you can vote for members of
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congress or senators but these are regulators that most of you will never get a chance to meet. >> if there's a way to put a moratorium on the full closure to stop the for closures while people apply for these and get an answer from these lenders and can ya'll hold these lender as countable that do not act in good faith? >> well i don't know the answer to your question but i'll get you one. congress just passed and the president signed into law a new federal regulatory bill. i don't know that any part of that legislation would deal with your question, but i'm going to guess brian or brooks or allison to get your phone number and an and we'll get you're address.
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thank you. >> we've talked about the homeowners insurance crisis here. it's been doing on for almost four years now. it's having a crippling effect on the economy here. certainly is hurting homeowners market and is forced people in for closure simply because they can't keep up with homeowners insurance premiums and we've been trying get the attention of the state government because insurance is basically a state problem although the federal government is involved in insurance in a lot of different ways. is there some way that the federal government can elect try guy the state government into doing something about this? or is the gene taylor bill subject to resuscitation so we can have some sort of logical relief from this thing if people understood exactly why they're paying six times the premiums
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they were paying four years ago it might be easier to bear. right now. we're in a state of confusion about this. we can't get anybody to talk to us with firm stats to show us why we on the coast are having to pay such high premiums which is not only effecting people with insurance but fire and theft and all the rest. i have a friend for example that's dropped, with insurance was dropped but the company that was insuring him said you can keep the rest of your insurance and they're charging him $1200 a year more for it. than he was paying before. eventhough there's no particular reason to believe that fire and theft should be more of a problem here than in the rest of the state. we're way above the state average and we can't figure out why. >> well, great question. as i said earlier, to a
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different question, long before april 20th, the lack of affordable and accessible wind and hazard policy was a crippling effect on the economy of this area. you mentioned that this is really not a responsibility of the federal government and you're right. this is not. you come to washington d.c. i hope you will all come some time and see the department of the treasury and department of education and energy. there's not a u.s. department of insurance. and actually i don't know what i want a u.s. department of insurance. but your also right that over the years we have been involved in kind of quasi role with insurance. the federal flood program is a good example. for years the federal flood program actually paid for itself. it actually, believe it or not was in the black. there's very few that are in the
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mack but it was able to sus stab itself from the premiums. then along comes hurricane ivan and hurricane katrina and hurricane rita and we ran through about five storages where the flood went from being in the black to the red to being in debt up to 16 million dollars. there's a friend of mine introduced a bill that you referenced that would basically say, while the federal government, he doesn't want the federal government to get more involved in insurance either but if you leave it up to the benevolence of the big insurance companies, what are they going to do? they'll walk away because of the risk. it's not just on the coast, it's in roberts dale. it's in fair hope, it's in locksly. he keeps moving further up where
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businesses and individual homeowners are being denied coverage even if they've not filed a claim. genesville twice this year or summer came chose to a vote and i was working as a republican with a democrat from mississippi to try to get other republicans and democrats to give this legislation a chance. congressman taylor says he doesn't believe this will cost money because you have to pay for it and charge appropriate premium levels and my goal in sponsors it was quite frankly not to get the federal government more involved in insurance but to send a message to insurance companies that you can't come in and sell us fire insurance or insurance for automobiles or the whole assortment of insurance. and not sell us what we need to be able to go to the bank. borrow money to buy a condo at the beach. it's sadly as you noted, this is
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an issue that even in alabama we've not gotten our friends in north alabama to know the importance of a strong baldwin county economy for the rest of the state. so it's a struggle. i hope that when we return in september after labor day, the congressman taylor is able to get the vote on his side and intend to work to get the votes on our side to pass this. we'll still have to get it passed through the senate and then it would still have to go through the admin. stravenlths one other option. the - governor rylie has been pressing administration and i think there's going to be some funding available. in the program that secretary waves of the navy that president barack obama has appointed to help write the long-term recovery for the gulf coast region. he's worked with mayor kenan and craft and others. some of this will probably come
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from the penalties and fines that will be assessed to be with bp that will have to be paid because of the violation of the violation of the pollution act. one of the things we may want to consider when that money comes in. we have a first fight. the gulf coast lawmakers to keep it here on the gulf coast. but one of in this, to consider, look. florida has a problem. mississippi and we all have the same problem. what people don't realize is the economy of the gulf coast is mighty important to the economy of the country. you know for the last several months we've been worried about what's going on with greece. it's a 356 billion dollar economy. the gulf coast economy from key west florida to brownsville texas is 2 trillion dollar economy.
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so we're really important to washington as well as montgomery. i'll do everything i can to work to get the gene taylor bill passed in the house and then we'll have to work to get it passed the senate and take it up with the president. . .
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we felt like we have been left high and dry with no well -- real help. we are a last ditch effort. i was wondering if there was any help you could give for that. >> we will be happy to contact you. it is not an individual thing.
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i cannot even know if we will start with mr. feinberg or bp. weevils see what we can do. if the promise was made, then in my view, it must be kept. >> they have never put it in writing. >> i know it is good work that you do. one of my most favorite people in the world is a resident. i love him because he tells wonderful stories. he went through hard times himself. one died from cancer and another died from a car wreck. he was homeless and lived under the pier. a lot of people in this
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community are going through difficult times. he went to the library, check out books. stories out there's they did not need the death and to be a homeless person living under the pier. he was able to take the stories of those people and weave them into the story that he tells. and he is a man of faith. he is someone who inspired generals to focus their troops on the mission. he has spoken to four u.s. presidents. if we did not have programs like the one had mentioned to help people through difficult times. i am more than happy to look
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into it. i would get your name and address. we will be in touch. >> i have a second question. this has to do with some people in the community. i realize this is dave real estate issue. -- this is a real estate issue. they found work in other locations, one in california, but they could not sell their house here in order to move there. the real estate issue needs to be addressed for those people who are finding employment elsewhere or have a desire to relocate but they cannot because of real estate being dead. is there anything from your perspective that can be done in this type of scenario? >> that is a really tough challenge. i think the mayor will back me of on this.
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moving mr. feinberg from here to here and the governor. he has been able bogdan this issue. the original answer to the example you gave or to a real- estate agent who have lost the commission is, "sorry, charlie." there were be about $70 billion? $60 million? ok. $60 million sabbath -- set aside to help the real estate community. >> i understand that is only real force. >> yes, because here is the challenge. they could not find work and moved to another place. >> they declined the job because they could not combine two households. who could?
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>> i am not here to defend bp were mr. feinberg. there is no way we could predict today. you have a better chance than i do in your line of work. >> i am doing a series on revelation if you would like to join. [laughter] >> there is no way we can predict when the markets will recover. it will recover. it always has. the last time was after hurricane ivan. we were watching the beaches. then president bush was down here. we were looking at condominiums and buildings that had been destroyed.
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you deal with the storm, the reality of the storm, then the recovery of the storm. i'm not saying i'm not sympathetic to this, but i do not know that we will get mr. feinberg's escrow account to include. i do not know that we will get it to include a loss in value because it will come back up. >> that was the key phrase at the end. hold . i am not talking about residents willing to wait this out but rather that is a specific real
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need in the immediate less of the conn creek -- of the crisis. >> it is not a decision that i think anyone in the congress will have a vote on. when president obama was here having a lunch, they were talking about a lot of things. i just do not believe that there will be an easy or tv -- even a happy answer. i appreciate your raising that. >> you do nothing, you achieve nothing. >> other questions? comments? yes, sir? >> i am a local fisherman. we have heard from some of the
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agents. in the last two years, the fishermen have given up. if you think it is hard to get a real estate loan, try to get a loan to fix your vote. the guys in the industry are really hurt. we are trying to recover. we are out there working hard every day. we are trying to maximize what fish we have left to catch. anything they can do to help the national association of fisher so we can maximize this would be a great help. we really are, in the fishing industry, are are there every
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day in that gulf. we are still not up. we are having to run over 70 miles round trip in closed waters to get where we can fish. it is cutting into the cost and making it tough. we appreciate what you have done. please hold their feet to the fire. we need all we can get. >> i would be happy to invite him. [laughter] we will invite the secretary to come down. you are right. the have gone through unimaginable said of circumstances. bp and the oil spill was the icing on the cake. you dealt with a high fuel costs. but you do with hurricanes. you dealt with bureaucrats in
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washington to have gotten into where you can take a group of people and catch two fish, maybe. it is as wholesome recreation you can find it is a great way to keep the environment. i refuse to believe some of the scientists and people i have heard say that we do not have any red snapper in the gulf anymore. they do not know. i appreciate a comment, but i appreciate the challenge. i will do more than you might imagine. i will call the secretary in the bite him down to about the national league of fisherman down. -- abacus the secretary and invite him down. i talked to the gentleman from
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the national marine fisheries not too long ago. they called and asked what we could do to get the alabama waters open. now they are saying there is additional testing that needs to be done. i'm going to do everything i can on that. >> and we appreciate what you have done. i am usually one of the last ones who know. i tried to stay as far away from politics that i can. >> you are a smart man. [laughter] >> other questions? comments? ideas? yes, ma'am? >> someone spoke earlier about the lack of credibility.
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personally, i think it has a lot to do with the influence corporations have over our politics in this country. i am speaking about the recent supreme court ruling allowing corporations to have unlimited expenditures for campaigns without disclosure. i am concerned about that. how this affects regulation, how this affects the lack of enforcement that we do have. the egg farms in iowa and so forth. i know there is a movement to try and overturn the supreme court ruling and to limit the influence that lobbyists have and how they can move there and
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back without a decent waiting period. can you speak a little bit about corporate influence over politics. >> corporations could not give to candidates. i do not believe i have never taken a contribution from a corporation in the eight years i have been in congress. those groups of employees who can make political action committee contributions -- i am very proud of the fact that in the eight years i have been your representative that over half have been from people in south
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alabama. families come individuals. it is the highest percentage of anyone in the alabama delegation in terms of receiving personal contributions. the supreme court threw out a law that had been on the books for some time. i'm just as concerned as you are about corporate contributions let go on reported. i'm also over -- concerned about the dues they can take from their members and not give them a voice as to how the union dues will be used to enforce political process. [applause] in terms of lobbyists, i do not want to be a light on this at all. i take what you say sincerely.
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an average day in my life, if i me with a lobbyist, it is a local banker. they are not a lobbyist, but they've talked about their ability to lend money. i meet lobbyists from the senior citizens community who lobbied me about social security. they are not lobbyists, but they are a person who came there to talk to me. you were talking about the professional paid lobbyists to get paid a lot of money. there are laws that are on the books now that say if a member of congress retires or is retired that they have to wait two years. the president made a big to do when he was running for office that he would not have any lobbyists working in his
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administration. he has not been able to keep that. i hear you loud and clear. you spoke eloquently about the concern. you do not want others to have undue influence. through campaign contributions or been involved in my decision making. here's my challenge to you. we really have to take it more seriously in our country. and the alabama, we have a republican primary and a democratic primary. a fiery ask for a show of hands, how many people six months ago would have predicted that commissioner sparks would be
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senator davis? for that bentley would beat bernie, james, and better norn people to do better known people who spent more than dr. bentley did. how many people would have truly believed that would have happened? fortunately, or or unfortunately, fortunately for dr. bentley and commissioner sparks, that are both good men. 24% of the people in this state who registered -- half the people. half of them are not even registered. only 24% of the people registered took the time on a tuesday in june to go vote. that has nothing to do with
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corporations, lobbyists, or anything. it has to do with us. last year i had a chance to go to iraq. i met with a group of people in iraq for the very first time. they told me they stood in a line 3 miles long from risk their lives for the right to vote in their very first election. i thought, you know what? if the people in the gulf shores and had to stand in a 3 mile long line to vote it would not be 24% cite it might not even before%. -- it might not even been 4%. no one controls your government or the people to take their government back.
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the best way to do that is to get active. election, this coming november 2. drive around the streets of orange beach. see how many people have a yard sign in their yard, have a bumper sticker on their bobber. that, with all due respect, is the best way to keep america on the track we want to go on. it is not just to say to limit. i agree with you. i promise you. if i can in one day to the city hall at orange beach and i said, "guess what? you cannot vote this week. the government says you cannot. we have taken away that right."
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people would be up in arms. never assume the privilege is something that is always here. >> i think you are preaching to the choir here. i am sure everyone in this room right now are very involved in their community and politics or we would not be here. >> you are right. >> how you get the word out to the people who do not come to these meetings or want to get involved? >> i have to under 50 schools in my district. i go any time on invited. bridget i have a 250 schools. the city came in to see new juvenile dive -- juvenile diabetes. we do not know if it is ok to bring a politician in. a lot of citigroup's will not allow elected officials to speak. it is a challenge. how you influence the people you
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go to church with for the people you go bowling with or the people you play bridge with or the people that you work with the community volunteer to get interested in keeping this country great? it is a challenge. i appreciate your question very much. ok. we have time for one more before the lights go off. >> , on up. we appreciate you have done for this community. what i want to say for you is i do not think that people here feel so alone. the first time i can to orange beach was to fish. i do not have much confidence in how we run the legislature.
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somebody in the congress needs to get a movement going like the tea party or something. we need to band together to create. they go do what they want to anyway. i think that is right. i voted twice for george bush. i did not vote for obama. i would not vote for either one of them again or ever. bush took us into a war not knowing how to get out. every time the republican congress passed a bill to spend money, they did not veto it. what happened? in 2006 the democrats took over. obama came along and said we needed to change. we got to change that i anticipated but not that i wanted.
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we need to come together just like newt gingrich's bid to come out and say something to the people. i do have any insurance. it has been canceled. i cannot afford it. [unintelligible] reelected converse. you need to come out with some morals. we do not need the insurance companies, the oil companies. we cannot get these people allowed to vote. i work at the polls.
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i understand, lady. the leadership in congress, there needs to be enough good people that can come together and say that is something we will strive and hope for. thank you for listening. [applause] >> it is a great observation and a great challenge. it is a personal challenge i take seriously. i have one vote. yet i have their opportunity to speak for 635,000 people they work for and represented in congress. there is not a single issue i am asked to vote on that i will make all 600 dirty 5000 people happy. there will be someone who will -- to make all 635,000 people
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happy. they say there is a 12% approval rating of congress. i do not know where they are. i am in congress. and i am on the house ethics committee, one of the most unpleasant tasks you could ask for. i have to sit on a committee of that stand in judgment of our colleagues. there are five republicans and five democrats. we are made aware of someone who has possibly committed a violation or broken a rule. we have to stand in judgment of those numbers. and is not an easy thing to do. i am trying as hard as i can with my example to do the right thing.
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>> and i think you do. >> thank you. i appreciate that. it is not enough. people are tired of hearing promises before election-and after election day seeing the results. that are tired of hearing the same old rhetoric in the 32nd ads -- 32nd ads. we are borrowing more and more from saudi arabia, china, brazil, other countries. tired of the same challenges time and time again. most of what we talked about at these meetings we could have talked about when congressman callaghan was in office or when john canally was in office. these are the same problems we have yet to tackle. i assure you of one thing.
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i hear the message loud and clear. i believe more importantly that washington is hearing the message loud and clear. the tea party movement that began on april 15 of last year, they were not just dissatisfied republicans, but they were independents, former republicans, democrats, but they are just frustrated and they think that washington that is owned lock, stock come and barrel by special interests. your interest is not being heard. i will give you a quick example as i close. i'm not saying this looking for sympathy, but i am just letting you know. most weeks, we are in session. wifee in o'neill with my
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and a 14-year-old daughter who will be 15 in a couple of days and my 12-year-old son. i do not live in washington d.c.. i get on a plane and i come home on thursday or friday. during that time, i meet with a lot of people who come to see me representing businesses and communities. he was a lobbyist lobbying me and yet he is not a registered lobbyist. he is a concerned citizen about a fishing community and legal community that he loves. during that day, i have a vote on the house floor and i serve on those committees. we will have hearings and meetings for hours and hours on end. is the system perfect? absolutely not. can it be improved that yes.
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there is a long way to go. i take to heart your criticism because it think it is given in a constructive but -- constructive way. both of you will not think i am shooting the wind with you. i think most of them are good, honorable, decent people to serve their community with the same conviction that i try to serve my. yet many give to washington, there are some people who have spent too much time in washington who forget what is happening in the real america. this is real america. the belt way is not. thank you for your constructive comments. i will give you my word that as your representative of the everything i can as one person to try and give you a reason that one day of the message got through that you could have confidence again in your
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government and i know you have confidence in your country. thank you so much. god bless you all. yes, sir? [applause] >> i have been to 13 meetings. i guess we owe you a vote of confidence. >> good. let's hope they do. thank you very much. [applause]
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but he is considered the father of modern community organizing. his 1971 book is still used as a blueprint for bringing about social change. >> he spent 10 years working for him and writes about his experience in, "radical -- a portrait of saul lansky."
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>> members return to the house of commons following summer recess. nick clegg stood in for david cameron who was in france due to the death of his father. they faced questioning about the communications chief who was accused of tapping into celebrities voice mail. mr. clegg also talks about aid to flood victims in pakistan and benefits. tonight at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. on friday, president obama suggested there may be enough republican support to pass a small business bill when congress returns this week. he confirmed that longtime adviser austin will be the next chair of the economic advisers. president obama spoke of about this for one hour and 15 minutes.
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>> good morning. before i take your questions, i just want to talk about our continuing efforts to dig ourselves out of this recession and to grow our economy. before i take your questions, i just want to talk a little bit about our continuing efforts to dig ourselves out of this recession and to grow our economy. as i said in cleveland on wednesday, i ran for president because i believed the policies of the previous decade had left our economy weaker and our middle class struggling. they were policies that cut taxes, especially for millionaires and billionaires, cut regulations for corporations and for special interests, and left everyone else pretty much fending for themselves. they were policies that ultimately culminated in a financial crisis and a terrible recession that we're still digging out of today. we came into office with a different view about how our economy should work. instead of tax cuts for millionaires, we believe in
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cutting taxes for middle-class families and small business owners. we've done that. instead of letting corporations play by their own rules, we believe in making sure that businesses treat workers well and consumers friendly, and play by the same rules as everyone else. so we've put in place common- sense rules that accomplish that. instead of tax breaks that encourage corporations to create jobs overseas, we believe in tax breaks for companies that create jobs right here in the united states of america. and so we've begun to do that. we believe in investments that will make america more competitive in the global economy: investments in education and clean energy, in research and technology. and we're making those investments. so these are the principles that have guided us over the last 19 months. and these are the principles that form the basis of the additional economic proposals that i offered this week.
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because even though the economy is growing again, and we've added more than 750,000 private sector jobs this year, the hole the recession left was huge and progress has been painfully slow. millions of americans are still looking for work. millions of families are struggling to pay their bills or the mortgage. and so these proposals are meant to both accelerate job growth in the short term and strengthen the economy in the long run. these proposals include a more generous, permanent extension of the tax credit that goes to companies for all the research and innovation that they do here in america. and i've proposed that all american businesses should be allowed to write off all the investments they do in 2011. this will help small businesses upgrade their plants and equipment, and will encourage large corporations to get off
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the sidelines and start putting their profits to work in our economy. we also announced a six-year plan to rebuild america's roads and railways and runways. already our investments in infrastructure are putting folks in the construction industry back to work. and this plan would put thousands more back to work, and it would help us remain competitive with countries in europe and asia that have already invested heavily in projects like high-speed railroads. but one thing we can do next week is end a month-long standoff on a small business jobs bill that's been held up in the senate by a partisan minority. i realize there are plenty of issues in washington where people of good faith simply disagree on principle. this should not and is not one of those issues. this is a bill that does two main things: it gives small business owners tax cuts, and it helps them get loans.
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it will eliminate capital gains taxes for key investments in 1 million small businesses. it will provide incentives to invest and create jobs for 4 million small businesses. it will more than double the amount some small business owners can borrow to grow their companies. it's a bill that's paid for, a bill that won't add to the deficit. it has been written by democrats and republicans. it's a bill that's been praised by the chamber of commerce. and yet a minority of republican senators have been using legislative tactics to prevent the bill from even getting to a vote. now, i was pleased to see that yesterday, republican senator george voinovich of ohio said he would refuse to support this blockade any longer. senator voinovich said, "this country is really hurting," and "we don't have time anymore to play games." i could not agree more. i understand there's an election coming up.
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but the american people didn't send us here to think about our jobs. they sent us here to think about theirs. and there are small businesses right now who are putting off plans to hire more workers because this bill is stalled. that's not the kind of leadership this country deserves. and i hope we can now move forward to get small business owners the relief they need to start hiring and growing again. and while we're on the subject of economics, i also want to make an announcement about my economic team. this week, christina romer returned to berkeley after a tireless, outstanding tenure as chair of the council of economic advisers. christy is brilliant, she is dedicated, and she was part of the team that helped save this country from a depression. so we're going to miss her dearly. but today, i'm happy to announce austan goolsbee as her
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replacement. austan has been one of my good friends and close economic advisors for many years. he's one of the finest economists in the country, and he's worked as a member of the council of economic advisers since we arrived here in washington. he's not just a brilliant economist, he's someone who has a deep appreciation of how the economy affects everyday people, and he talks about it in a way that's easily understood. he already knows and works with the rest of the team very well. i have complete confidence he's going to do an outstanding job as cea chair. and finally, tomorrow we will commemorate not only the heartbreak of september 11th, but also the enduring values and resilient spirit of america. both michelle and i will be joining our fellow citizens in remembering those who were lost on that day and honoring all who exhibited such extraordinary heroism in the midst of tragedy. i'll have further remarks tomorrow, but for now let me
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just note that tomorrow is a national day of service and remembrance and i hope each of us finds a way to serve our fellow citizens -- not only to reaffirm our deepest values as americans, but to rekindle that spirit of unity and common purpose that we felt in the days that followed that september morning. and now i'd be happy to take some questions, and i'm going to start with darlene superville of ap. >> thank you, mr. president. you said this week that democrats wouldn't do well in the november elections if it turns out to be a referendum on the economy. but with millions of people out of work and millions of people losing their homes, how could it not be a referendum on the economy and your handling of it, and why would you not welcome that? >> well, the -- what i said was that if it was just a referendum on whether we've made
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the kind of progress that we need to, then people around the country would say we're not there yet. if the election is about the policies that are going to move us forward versus the policies that will get us back into a mess, then i think the democrats will do very well. and here's why. as i just indicated, middle- class families had been struggling for a decade, before i came into office. their wages and incomes had flat-lined. they were seeing the cost of everything from health care to sending their kids to college going up. job growth was the weakest of any economic expansion between 2001 and 2008 since world war ii. the pace was slower than it's been over the last year. so these policies of cutting taxes for the wealthiest americans, of stripping away
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regulations that protect consumers, running up a record surplus to a record deficit -- those policies finally culminated in the worst financial crisis we've had since the great depression. and for 19 months, what we have done is steadily worked to avoid a depression, to take an economy that was contracting rapidly and making it grow again; a situation where we were losing 750,000 jobs a month, and now we've had eight consecutive months of private sector job growth; and made investments that are going to strengthen the economy over the long term. but we're not there yet. we lost 4 million jobs in the six months before i was sworn in, and we lost 8 million jobs total during the course of this recession.
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that is a huge hole to dig ourselves out of. and people who have lost their jobs around the country and can't find one, moms who are sending out resumes and not getting calls back, worried about losing homes and not being able to pay bills -- they're not feeling good right now. and i understand that. and i ran precisely because i did not think middle-class families in this country were getting a fair shake. and i ran because i felt that we had to have a different economic philosophy in order to grow that middle class and grow our economy over the long term. now, for all the progress we've made, we're not there yet. and that means that people are frustrated and that means people are angry. and since i'm the president and democrats have controlled the house and the senate, it's understandable that people are saying, what have you done.
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but between now and november, what i'm going to remind the american people of is that the policies that we have put in place have moved us in the right direction, and the policies that the republicans are offering right now are the exact policies that got us into this mess. it's not a situation where they went and reflected, and said to themselves, you know what, we didn't do some things right and so we've got a whole bunch of new ideas out here that we want to present to you that we think are going to help put us on the path of strong growth -- that's not what happens. the chairman of their committee has said, we would do the exact same things as we did before obama took office. well, we know where that led. and a perfect example is the debate we're having on taxes right now. i have said that middle-class families need tax relief right
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now. and i'm prepared to work on a bill and sign a bill this month that would ensure that middle- class families get tax relief. ninety-seven percent of americans make less than $250,000 a year -- $250,000 a year or less. and i'm saying we can give those families -- 97 percent permanent tax relief. and by the way, for those who make more than $250,000, they'd still get tax relief on the first $250,000; they just wouldn't get it for income above that. now, that seems like a common- sense thing to do. and what i've got is the republicans holding middle-class tax relief hostage because they're insisting we've got to give tax relief to millionaires and billionaires to the tune of
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about $100,000 per millionaire, which would cost over the course of 10 years, $700 billion, and that economists say is probably the worst way to stimulate the economy. that doesn't make sense, and that's an example of what this election is all about. if you want the same kinds of skewed policies that led us to this crisis, then the republicans are ready to offer that. but if you want policies that are moving us out, even though you may be frustrated, even though change isn't happening as fast as you'd like, then i think democrats are going to do fine in november. caren. >> thank you, mr. president. you're looking for republican help on the economic proposals that you unveiled this week, and you also mentioned the small business bill.
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but you're at odds with them over tax cuts. is there room for a middle ground whereby, for example, the tax cuts on the wealthy could be extended for a period of time, and then allowed to expire? >> well, certainly there is going to be room for discussion. my hope is, is that on this small business bill that is before the senate right now, that we actually make some progress. i still don't understand why we didn't pass that two months ago. as i said, this was written by democrats and republicans. this is a bill that traditionally you'd probably get 90 percent or 100 percent republican support. but we've been playing politics for the last several months. and if the republican leadership is prepared to get serious about doing something for families that are hurting out there, i would love to talk to them. now, on the high-income tax cuts, my position is let's get
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done what we all agree on. what they've said is they agree that the middle class tax cut should be made permanent. let's work on that. let's do it. we can have a further conversation about how they want to spend an additional $700 billion to give an average of $100,000 to millionaires. that, i think, is a bad idea. if you were going to spend that money, there are a lot better ways of spending it. but more to the point, these are the same folks who say that they're concerned about the deficits. why would we borrow money on policies that won't help the economy and help people who don't need help? but setting that aside, we've got an area of agreement, which is, let's help families out there who are having a tough time.
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as i said, we could, this month, give every american certainty and tax relief up to $250,000 a year. every single american would benefit from that. now, people who make $250,000 a year or less, they'd benefit on all their income. people who make a million dollars would benefit on a quarter of their income. but the point is, is that that's something that we can all agree to. why hold it up? why hold the middle class hostage in order to do something that most economists don't think makes sense? >> so are you ruling out a deal with republicans on tax cuts for the wealthiest? >> what i'm saying is let's do what we agreed to and that the americans -- people overwhelmingly agreed to, which is let's give certainty to families out there that are
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having a tough time. chip reid. >> thank you, mr. president. on the economic package that you rolled out earlier this week, first on the business tax cuts. why did you wait until this superheated campaign season to roll it out? a lot of your critics and even some democrats say, well, clearly he's just using this for political purposes, he doesn't have any expectation it's actually going to be passed, it's a political weapon. why did you wait so long to bring that out? and on the stimulus part, we can't get people in the white house to say it is a stimulus -- $50 billion for roads and other infrastructure, but they avoid the word "stimulus" like the plague. is that because the original stimulus is so deeply unpopular? and if so, why is it so unpopular? >> well, let me -- let me go back to when i first came into office.
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we had an immediate task, which was to rescue an economy that was tipping over a cliff. and we put in place an economic plan that 95 percent of economists say substantially helped us avoid a depression. a third of those were tax cuts, by the way. a third of that economic plan was tax cuts for individuals and for small businesses. so we haven't -- this notion that we waited until now to put forward a series of plans, chip, we've -- just on the small business issue alone, we have cut taxes for small businesses eight times during the course of the last 18 months. so we're hardly johnnie-come- latelys on this issue. now, when you put all the things we've done together, it has made a difference. three million people have jobs
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that wouldn't have them otherwise had we not taken these steps. the economy would be in much worse shape. but as i said before, we're not where we need to go yet -- which means that if we're not there yet, what else can we do? and the proposals that we've put forward are ones that historically, again, have garnered bipartisan support: a research and development tax credit so that companies that are investing in research here in the united states -- which is part of what's going to keep us growing and keep us innovative -- let's make sure that companies are strongly incentivized to do that. making sure that their expensing accelerated business depreciation is happening in 2011, so that if companies are sort of sitting on the sidelines right now, not sure whether they should invest, let's give them incentive to go ahead and invest now to give that a jumpstart. on infrastructure, we've got a highway bill that traditionally
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is done every six years. and what we're saying is let's ramp up what we're doing, let's beef it up a little bit -- because we've got this infrastructure all across the country that everybody from governors to mayors to economists to engineers of all political stripes have said is holding us back in terms of our long-term competitiveness -- let's get started now rebuilding america. and in terms of paying for some of these things, let's stop giving tax breaks to companies that are shipping jobs overseas, let's stop incentivizing that. let's give tax breaks to companies that are investing right here in the united states of america. those are all common-sense approaches. historically, as you know, you've been around this town for a long time -- usually, republicans and democrats agree on infrastructure. usually, republicans and democrats agree on making sure that research and development investments are made right here in the united states. and so let's get it done.
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it has nothing to do with the notion that somehow what we did previously didn't work. it worked. it just hasn't done as much as we need it to do. we've still got a long ways to go and we're going to keep on doing it. >> so this is a second stimulus? [laughter] >> here's how i would -- there is no doubt that everything we've been trying to do -- everything we've been trying to do is designed to stimulate growth and additional jobs in the economy. i mean, that's our entire agenda. so i have no problem with people saying the president is trying to stimulate growth and hiring. isn't that what i should be doing? i would assume that's what the republicans think we should do, to stimulate growth and jobs.
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and i will keep on trying to stimulate growth and jobs for as long as i'm president of the united states. hans nichols. >> thank you, mr. president. [inaudible] -- i'll ask my real question. it's now been more than two months since the financial reg reform bill has passed. a centerpiece of that was what you talked about as a consumer financial protection bureau. and yet you haven't named a head. is elizabeth warren still a leading candidate? and if not, are you worried about some sort of senate hurdle for her confirmation? thank you. >> this is a great opportunity to talk to the american people about what i do think is going to be hugely helpful to middle- class families in the years and decades to come, and that is an agency that has been set up, an independent agency, whose sole job is to protect families in their financial transactions.
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so if you are getting a credit card, we are going to have an agency that makes sure that that credit card company can't jack up your rates without any reason -- including on old balances. and that could save american consumers tens of billions of dollars just in the first couple of years. if you are out there looking for a mortgage -- and we all know that part of the problem with the financial crisis was that folks were peddling mortgages that were unstable, that had these huge balloon payments that people didn't fully understand well. now there's going to be some oversight in terms of how mortgages are shaped, and people are going to actually have to know what they're getting and what they're buying into. that's going to protect the economy, as well as individual consumers. so this agency i think has the capacity to really provide middle-class families the kind of protection that's been
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lacking for too long. now, the idea for this agency was elizabeth warren's. she's a dear friend of mine. she's somebody i've known since i was in law school. and i have been in conversations with her. she is a tremendous advocate for this idea. it's only been a couple of months, and this is a big task standing up this entire agency, so i'll have an announcement soon about how we're going to move forward. and i think what's fair to say is, is that i have had conversations with elizabeth over the course of these -- over these last couple of months. but i'm not going to make an official announcement until it's ready. >> are you unofficially concerned about a senate confirmation?
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>> i'm concerned about all senate confirmations these days. i mean, if i nominate somebody for dog catcher -- >> but with respect to elizabeth warren, are you -- >> hans, i wasn't trying to be funny. i am concerned about all senate nominations these days. i've got people who have been waiting for six months to get confirmed who nobody has an official objection to and who were voted out of committee unanimously, and i can't get a vote on them. we've got judges who are pending. we've got people who are waiting to help us on critical issues like homeland security. and it's very hard when you've got a determined minority in the senate that insists on a 60- vote filibuster on every single person that we're trying to confirm, even if after we break the filibuster, it turns out that they get 90 votes. they're just playing games. and as i think senator voinovich said very well, it's time to stop playing games. all right. chuck todd.
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>> given the theme, i think, of all of your answers, i've just got a short question for you. how have you changed washington? >> well, i'll tell you how we've changed washington. prior to us getting here, as i indicated before, you had a set of policies that were skewed toward special interests, skewed towards the most powerful, and ordinary families out there were being left behind. and since we've gotten here, whether it's making sure that folks who can't get health insurance because of preexisting condition can now get health insurance, or children who didn't have coverage now have coverage; whether it's making sure that credit card companies have to actually post in understandable ways what your credit card rates are and they can't jack up existing balances in arbitrary ways; whether it's making sure
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that we've got clean water and clean air for future generations; whether it's making sure that tax cuts go to families that need it as opposed to folks who don't -- on a whole range of issues over the last 18 months, we've put in place policies that are going to help grow a middle class and lay the foundation for long-term economic growth. now, if you're asking why haven't i been able to create a greater spirit of cooperation in washington, i think that's fair. i'm as frustrated as anybody by it. i think part of it has to do with the fact that when we came into office, we came in under very tough economic
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circumstances, and i think that some of the republican leaders made a decision, we're going to sit on the sidelines and let the democrats try to solve it. and so we got a lot of resistance very early. i think what's also true is that when you take on tough issues like health care or financial regulatory reform, where special interests are deeply entrenched, there's a lot of money at stake for them, and where the issues are so complicated that it drags on for a long time, you end up having a lot of big fights here in town. and it's messy. and it's frustrating. >> [inaudible] >> well -- and so there is no doubt that an option that was available to me when i came in was not to take on those issues.
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i mean, we could had decided, you know what, even though we know that the pace of accelerating health care costs is going to bankrupt this economy and bankrupt businesses and bankrupt individuals, and even though we know that there are 30 million people, and that's a growing number of people, who don't have health insurance, we could have said, you know what, that's just too controversial, let's not take it on. and we could have said with respect to financial regulatory reform, you know what, we're just going to get too much resistance from republicans, we shouldn't take that on. i don't think that's the kind of leadership that the american people would want from their president. and are there things that i might have done during the course of 18 months that would at the margins have improved
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some of the tone in washington? probably. is some of this just a core difference in approach in terms of how we move this forward between democrats and republicans? i'd say the answer is a lot more the latter. anne kornblut. >> thank you, mr. president. nine years after the september 11th attacks, why do you think it is that we are now seeing such an increase in suspicion and outright resentment of islam, especially given that it has been one of your priorities to increase -- to improve relations with the muslim world? >> i think that at a time when the country is anxious generally and going through a
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tough time, then fears can surface, suspicions, divisions can surface in a society. and so i think that plays a role in it. one of the things that i most admired about president bush was after 9/11, him being crystal-clear about the fact that we were not at war with islam. we were at war with terrorists and murderers who had perverted islam, had stolen its banner to carry out their outrageous acts. and i was so proud of the country rallying around that idea, that notion that we are not going to be divided by religion; we're not going to be divided by ethnicity. we are all americans. we stand together against those
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who would try to do us harm. and that's what we've done over the last nine years. and we should take great pride in that. and i think it is absolutely important now for the overwhelming majority of the american people to hang on to that thing that is best in us, a belief in religious tolerance, clarity about who our enemies are -- our enemies are al qaeda and their allies who are trying to kill us, but have killed more muslims than just about anybody on earth. we have to make sure that we don't start turning on each other. and i will do everything that i can as long as i am president of the united states to remind the american people that we are one nation under god, and we may call that god different names
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but we remain one nation. and as somebody who relies heavily on my christian faith in my job, i understand the passions that religious faith can raise. but i'm also respectful that people of different faiths can practice their religion, even if they don't subscribe to the exact same notions that i do, and that they are still good people, and they are my neighbors and they are my friends, and they are fighting alongside us in our battles. and i want to make sure that this country retains that sense of purpose.
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and i think tomorrow is a wonderful day for us to remind ourselves of that. natasha mozgovaya of haaretz. is she here? natasha -- there you are back there. >> mr. president, back in the region, the palestinian and israeli leaders, they sound a bit less ready for this historic compromise. president abbas, for example, said the palestinians won't recognize israel as a jewish state. the question is, if these talks fail at an early stage, will this administration disengage? or maybe you're ready to step up and deepen your personal involvement. >> president abbas and prime minister netanyahu were here last week, and they came with a sense of purpose and seriousness and cordiality that,
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frankly, exceeded a lot of people's expectations. what they said was that they were serious about negotiating. they affirmed the goal of creating two states, living side by side in peace and security. they have set up a schedule where they're going to meet every two weeks. we are actively participating in that process. secretary of state hillary clinton will be flying to the middle east for the first series of next meetings on september 14th and 15th. and so what we've done is to bring the parties together to try to get them to recognize that the path for israeli security and palestinian
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sovereignty can only be met through negotiations. and these are going to be tough negotiations. there are enormous hurdles between now and our endpoint, and there are going to be a whole bunch of folks in the region who want to undermine these negotiations. we saw it when hamas carried out these horrific attacks against civilians -- and explicitly said, we're going to try to do this to undermine peace talks. there are going to be rejectionists who suggest that it can't happen, and there are also going to be cynics who just believe that the mistrust between the sides is too deep. we understood all that. we understood that it was a risk for us to promote these discussions.
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but it is a risk worth taking. because i firmly believe that it is in america's national security interests, as well as israel's national security interests, as well as in the interests of the palestinian people, to arrive at a peace deal. part of the reason that i think prime minister netanyahu was comfortable coming here was that he's seen, during the course of 18 months, that my administration is unequivocal in our defense of israel's security. and we've engaged in some unprecedented cooperation with israel to make sure that they can deal with any external threats. but i think he also came here understanding that to maintain israel as a jewish state that is also a democratic state, this issue has to be dealt with. i think president abbas came here, despite great misgivings and pressure from the other side, because he understood the window for creating a palestinian state is closing. and there are a whole bunch of
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parties in the region who purport to be friends of the palestinians and yet do everything they can to avoid the path that would actually lead to a palestinian state, would actually lead to their goal. and so the two parties need each other. that doesn't mean it's going to work. ultimately it's going to be up to them. we can facilitate; we can encourage; we can tell them that we will stand behind them in their efforts and are willing to contribute as part of the broader international community in making this work. but ultimately the parties have to make these decisions for themselves. and i remain hopeful, but this is going to be tough. and i don't want anybody out there thinking that it's going to be easy. the main point i want to make is it's a risk worth taking because the alternative is a status quo that is unsustainable. and so if these talks break
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down, we're going to keep on trying. over the long term, it has the opportunity, by the way, also to change the strategic landscape in the middle east in a way that would be very helpful. it would help us deal with an iran that has not been willing to give up its nuclear program. it would help us deal with terrorist organizations in the region. so this is something in our interest. we're not just doing this to feel good. we're doing it because it will help secure america as well. jake tapper. >> thank you, mr. president. a couple questions. first, were you concerned at all when you -- when the administration had secretary of defense gates call this pastor in florida that you were elevating somebody who is
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clearly from the fringe? and then more substantively, on health care reform, this is six months since health care passed. you pledged, a, that you would bend the cost curve, and b, that you democrats would be able to campaign on this. and cms reported yesterday that the cost curve is actually bending up, from 6.1 percent to 6.3 percent, post-health care legislation. and the only democrats i've seen talking about health care legislation are running tv ads saying that they voted against it. thank you. >> with respect to the individual down in florida, let me just say -- let me repeat what i said a couple of days ago. the idea that we would burn the sacred texts of someone else's religion is contrary to what this country stands for. it's contrary to what this
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country -- this nation was founded on. and my hope is, is that this individual prays on it and refrains from doing it. but i'm also commander-in- chief, and we are seeing today riots in kabul, riots in afghanistan, that threaten our young men and women in uniform. and so we've got an obligation to send a very clear message that this kind of behavior or threats of action put our young men and women in harm's way. and it's also the best imaginable recruiting tool for al qaeda. and although this may be one individual in florida, part of my concern is to make sure that we don't start having a whole bunch of folks all across the country think this is the way to get attention.
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this is a way of endangering our troops -- our sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, husbands and wives who are sacrificing for us to keep us safe. and you don't play games with that. so i hardly think we're the ones who elevated this story. but it is, in the age of the internet, something that can cause us profound damage around the world, and so we've got to take it seriously. with respect to health care, what i said during the debate is the same thing i'm saying now and it's the same thing i will say three or four years from now. bending the cost curve on health care is hard to do.
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we've got hundreds of thousands of providers and doctors and systems and insurers. and what we did was we took every idea out there about how to reduce or at least slow the costs of health care over time. but i said at the time, it wasn't going to happen tomorrow, it wasn't going to happen next year. it took us decades to get into a position where our health care costs were going up 6, 7, 10 percent a year. and so our goal is to slowly bring down those costs. now, we've done so also by making sure that 31 million people who aren't getting health insurance are going to start getting it. and we have now implemented the
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first phase of health care in a way that, by the way, has been complimented even by the opponents of health care reform. it has been smooth. and right now middle-class families all across america are going to be able to say to themselves, starting this month, if i've got a kid who is under 26 and doesn't have health insurance, that kid can stay on my health insurance. if i've got a child with a preexisting condition, an insurer can't deny me coverage. if i get sick and i've got health insurance, that insurance company can't arbitrarily drop my coverage. there are 4 million small businesses around the country who are already eligible and in some cases will be receiving a 35 percent tax break on health care for their employees. and i've already met small businesses around the country who say, because of that, i'm going to be able to provide health care for my employees, i thought it was the right thing to do. so --
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>> -- the cms study from february predicted a 6.1 percent increase, and now, post-health care, 6.3 percent. so it seems to have bent it up. >> no, as i said, jake, the -- i haven't read the entire study. maybe you have. but if you -- if what -- the reports are true, what they're saying is, is that as a consequence of us getting 30 million additional people health care, at the margins that's going to increase our costs, we knew that. we didn't think that we were going to cover 30 million people for free, but that the long-term trend in terms of how much the average family is going to be paying for health insurance is going to be improved as a consequence of health care. and so our goal on health care is, if we can get, instead of health care costs going up 6 percent a year, it's going up at the level of inflation, maybe just slightly above inflation, we've made huge
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progress. and by the way, that is the single most important thing we could do in terms of reducing our deficit. that's why we did it. that's why it's important, and that's why we're going to implement it effectively. >> sorry, and then the house democrats running against health care -- if you could comment on that. >> well, there are -- we're in a political season where every candidate out there has their own district, their own makeup, their own plan, their own message. and in an environment where we've still got 9.5 percent unemployment, people are going to make the best argument they can right now. and they're going to be taking polls of what their particular constituents are saying, and trying to align with that oftentimes. that's how political races work. april ryan.
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>> thank you, mr. president. i want to ask a couple questions. on the economy, could you discuss your efforts at reviewing history as it relates to the poverty agenda, meaning lbj and dr. king? and also, since senate republicans are holding up the issue of cobell and pigford, too, can you make any assurances before you leave office that you will make sure that those awards are funded? >> let me take the second question first. for those who aren't familiar, cobell and pigford relate to settlements surrounding historic discrimination against minority farmers who weren't oftentimes provided the same benefits as everybody else under the usda.
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it is a fair settlement. it is a just settlement. we think it's important for congress to fund that settlement. we're going to continue to make it a priority. with respect to the history of fighting poverty, i got my start in public service as a community organizer working in the shadow steel plants that had been closed in some of the poorest neighborhoods on the south side of chicago. that's what led me to want to serve. and so i am constantly thinking about how do we create ladders for communities and individuals to climb into the middle class. now, i think the history of anti-poverty efforts is, is that the most important anti- poverty effort is growing the
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economy and making sure there are enough jobs out there -- single most important thing we can do. it's more important than any program we could set up. it's more important than any transfer payment that we could have. if we can grow the economy faster and create more jobs, then everybody is swept up into that virtuous cycle. and if the economy is shrinking and things are going badly, then the folks who are most vulnerable are going to be those poorest communities. so what we want to focus on right now is broad-based job growth and broad-based economic expansion. and we're doing so against some tough headwinds, because, as i said, we are coming out of a very difficult -- very difficult time.
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we've started to turn the corner but we're not there yet. and so that is going to be my central focus: how do i grow the economy? how do i make sure that there's more job growth? that doesn't mean that there aren't some targeted things we can do to help communities that are especially in need. and probably the most important thing we can do after growing the economy generally is how can we improve school systems in low-income communities. and i am very proud of the efforts that we've made on education reform -- which have received praise from democrats and republicans. this is one area where actually we've seen some good bipartisan cooperation. and the idea is very simple. if we can make sure that we have the very best teachers in the classroom, if we can reward excellence instead of mediocrity and the status quo, if we can make sure that we're tracking progress in real,
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serious ways and we're willing to make investments in what goes on in the classroom and not the school bureaucracy, and reward innovation, then schools can improve. there are models out there of schools in the toughest inner- city neighborhood that are now graduating kids, 90 percent of whom are going to college. and the key is how do we duplicate those? and so what our race to the top program has done is it's said to every state around the country, instead of just getting money based on a formula, we want you to compete. show us how you are reforming your school systems to promote excellence, based on proven ideas out there. and if you do that, we're going to reward you with some extra money. and just the competition alone has actually spurred 46 states
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so far to initiate legislation designed to reform the school system. so we're very proud of that, and that i think is going to be one of the most important things we can do. it's not just, by the way, k-12. it's also -- it's also higher education. and as a consequence of a battle that we had -- and it was a contentious battle -- in congress, we've been able to take tens of billions of dollars that were going to banks and financial intermediaries in the student loan program and said we're going to give that money directly to students so that they get more help going to college. and obviously poor kids are the ones who are going to benefit most from those programs. helene cooper. >> thank you, mr. president. two questions. one on afghanistan.
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how can you lecture hamid karzai about corruption when so many of these corrupt people are on the u.s. payroll? and on the middle east, do you believe that israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu should extend the settlement moratorium as a gesture to peace? and if he doesn't, what are you prepared to do to stop the palestinians from walking? >> okay. on afghanistan, we are in the midst of a very difficult but very important project. i just want to remind people why we're there -- the day before september 11th. we're there because that was the place where al qaeda launched an attack that killed 3,000 americans. and we want to make sure that we dismantle al qaeda, and that afghanistan is never again used
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as a base for attacks against americans and the american homeland. now, afghanistan is also the second poorest country in the world. it's got an illiteracy rate of 70 percent. it has a multiethnic population that mistrusts, oftentimes, each other. and it doesn't have a tradition of a strong, central government. so what we have done is to say we are going to, after seven years of drift, after seven years of policies in which, for example, we weren't even effectively training afghan security forces, what we've done is to say we're going to work with the afghan government to train afghan security forces so they can be responsible for
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their own security. we are going to promote a political settlement in the region that can help to reduce the violence. we are going to encourage a afghan government that can deliver services for its people. and we're going to try to make sure that as part of helping president karzai stand up a broadly accepted, legitimate government, that corruption is reduced. and we've made progress on some of those fronts. i mean, when it comes to corruption, i'll just give you an example. four years ago, afghan judges in the legal system were indicted for corruption. this year, 86 of them were
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indicted for corruption. we have seen afghan-led efforts that have gone after police commanders, significant business people in afghanistan. but we are long way from where we need to beyond that. every time i talk with president karzai, i say, as important as it is for us to help you train our military and your police forces, the only way that you are going to have a stable government over the long term as if the afghan people feel that you are looking after them. that means making sure that the tradition of corruption in the government is reduced. we are going to keep on putting pressure on him on that front. is it going to happen overnight? probably not. are there going to be occasions where we look and see some of
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our folks on the ground have made compromises with people who are known to have engaged in corruption? we are reviewing all of that constantly. there may be occasions when that happens. right, you're certainly helene, that we are not sending mixed messages here. one of the things that i have said to my national security is to be consistent. -- let's be consistent in terms of how we are cross-agencies. that is not be seen giving a week and an eye to corruption. if we said publicly that that is important, then our actions have to match up across the board. but it is a challenging environment in which to do that. with respect to prime minister netanyahu and the middle east, a major bone of contention during
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the course of this month will be the potential lapse of the settlement moratorium. the irony is that, when prime minister netanyahu put that moratorium in place, the palestinians were skeptical. they said, this does not do anything. it turns out that, to prime minister netanyahu is credit and israel's credit, the moratorium has had actual significance. it has significantly reduced settlement construction in the region. that is why they say, even though we were not that keen on it at first we thought it was just window dressing, it turns out that this is important to us. what i have said to prime minister netanyahu is that, given so far the talks are moving forward in a constructive
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way, it makes sense to extend that moratorium so long as the talks are moving in a constructive way. ultimately, the way to solve these problems is for the two sides to agree, would visit quantity, is real? what will be the state of palestine? if you can get that agreement, then you can start constructing anything that the people of israel see fit in and disputed areas. -- in the undisputed areas. there are members of his coalition who have said, we do not want to continue this. one of the things that i have thatto president the bosabbas s you have to show the israeli public that you are serious and constructive in these talks so
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that the politics for prime minister netanyahu, if he were to extend the settlements moratorium, it would be a little easier. one of the goals that i think i have set for myself and for my team is to make sure that president abbas and prime minister netanyahu start thinking about how can they help the other succeed, as opposed to how do they figure out a way for the other two failed. if they are going to be successful in bringing about is theey now agree best course of action for their people, they need to see the world through the other person's eyes. that requires a personal
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relationship and building trust. hopefully, these meetings will help do that. ann compton. >> mr. president, what does it say about the status of the american system of justice when some many of those who are thought to be plotters for september 11 or accused of suspected terrorism are still awaiting any kind of trial? why are you still convinced that a civilian trial is correct for clique shake muhammed? why has that stalled -- for kahlik sheik mohammed? why has that stalled? >> we have succeeded in delivering elecampane promises that we made. one where we have fallen short is closing guantanamo. i wanted to close it sooner. we have missed that deadline.
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it is not for lack of trying. it is because the politics of it are difficult. i am absolutely convinced that the american justice system is strong enough, that we should be able to convict people who murdered innocent americans, who carried out terrorist attacks against us. we should be able to lock them up and make sure that they do not see the light of day. we can do that. we have done it before. we have people who engaged in terrorist attacks who are in our prisons, maximum-security prisons, all across the country. but this is an issue that has generated a lot of political -- .icrhetoric
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people, understandably, are fearful. but one of the things that is worth reflecting on after 9/11 is that this country so resilience. we are so tough. we cannot be frightened by a handful of people who are trying to do less harm, especially when we capture them and we have the goods on them. i have also said that there will be circumstances where a military tribunal may be appropriate. the reason for that, i will give a specific example. there may soon to predict there may be situations where somebody was captured in theater -- there may be situations where somebody was captured in theater and is
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now at guantanamo. it is hard to piece together a chain of evidence that would be required in an article 3 court. but we know that this person is guilty. there is sufficient evidence to bring about a conviction. so what i have said is that the military commission system that where appropriate for certain individuals that would make it difficult for article 3 courts for a range of reasons, we can reform that system so that it meets the highest standards of due process and prosecute them there. so i am prepared to work with the democrats and republicans. and we, over the course of the last year, have been in constant conversations, about setting up a sensible system in which we are prosecuting where
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appropriate those in article 3 courts. we are uproot -- we are prosecuting those where a proper it in a military tribunal. we put them in military prisons where our track record shows they have never escaped. from a purely fiscal point of view, the costs of holding folks in guantanamo is massively higher than it is holding them in a super maximum security prison here in the united states. >> what about kahlik shiek muhammed? will that trial ever happen? >> i think it needs to happen. this will be on a bipartisan basis to move this forward in a way that is consistent with our standards of due process,
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consistent with our constitution, consistent also with our image in the world of a country that cares about the rule of law. you cannot underestimate the impact of that. al qaeda operatives still cite guantanamo as a justification for attacks against the united states. still, to this day, that is so. there is no reason for us to give them that kind of talking point. we can use the various mechanisms of our justice system to prosecute these folks and make sure that they never attack us again. ok. said henry. >> you talk about some of the al qaeda leaders you have captured. when you have not is osama bin laden. tomorrow will be the ninth year
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since americans were killed. the last administration had seven years and could not do it. what you said as president- elect, use of capturing osama bin laden is a critical step in setting out al qaeda. he is not just a symbol, but the leader of an organization planning attacks on the u.s. do you still believe that it is a critical policy to capture or kill him. you campaigned saying that you would run a smarter war on terror. you have not captured him. you do not seem to know where he is. >> capturing or killing the layton would be extremely important to our national security. -- capturing or killing been laden would be extremely important to our
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national security. we have put the pressure on al qaeda and their leaders. as a consequence, they have been holed up and making it harder for them to operate. as a consequence, some of the layton has gone deep underground. -- osama bin laden has gone deep underground. but we have the best minds, the best intelligence officers, the best special forces who are thinking about this day and night. they will continue to think about it day and night as long as i am president. >> do you think americans will face another nine years of this terrorist threat, another generation? >> here's what i think. in this day and age, there is
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always going to be the potential for an individual or a small group of individuals, if they're willing to die to kill other people, some of them will be well-organized and some of them will be random. that threat is there. it is important for the american people to understand that. not to live in fear, but it is the reality of today's world that there will be threats out there. we have greatly improve our homeland security since 9/11 occurred. i am constantly impressed with the dedication that our teams apply through this problem. they are chasing down every threat, not just from al qaeda,
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but from every other actor out there that may be engaging in terrorism. they are making sure that even what might appear to be a lone individual who has very little organizational capacity, if they make a threat, the follow-up. but one of the things that i want to make sure we do, as long as i am president and beyond my presidency, is understand america's strength and part comes from its resilience and that we do not start losing who we are or overreacting if, in fact, there is the threat of terrorism out there. we go about our business. we are tougher than them. our families and our businesses
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, our churches and mosques and synagogues, our constitution and our values, that is what gives us our strength. we are going to have this problem out there for a long time to come, but it does not have to completely dominate us or our foreign policy. we can just constantly fight against it. ultimately, we will be able to stamp it out. but it will take some time. >> [unintelligible] >> wendell. >> thank you, mr. president. i wonder if i could get you to weigh in on building -- on the wisdom of building a mosque near ground zero. what would it say about this country if they were talked out of doing that? have not the florida minister's threat to burn a couple hundred copies of the koran itself put
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american lives in danger? >> on your second question, there is no doubt that, when someone goes out of their way to be provocative in ways that we passionsinflatinflame the of 1 million muslims around the world at a time when we have our troops and a lot of muslim countries, that is a problem. it has made life a lot more difficult for our men and women in uniform who already have a very difficult job. with respect to the mosque in new york, i think i have been pretty clear on my position. that is that this country stands for the proposition that all men and women are created equal,
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that they have certain inalienable rights. one of those in alienable rights is to practice their religious freedom. but that means is that, if you could build a church on a site, you could build a synagogue on a side, if you could build a hindu temple on a site, then you should be able to build a mosque on the site. i recognize the extraordinary sensitivities around 9/11. i have met with families of 9/11 victims in the past. i can only imagine that the continuing pain and anguish and sense of loss that they may go through. and tomorrow, we, as americans, will be joining them in prayer and remembers.
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-- and remembrance. but i go back to what i said earlier. we are not at war against islam. we are at war against terrorist organizations that have distorted is long or falsely used the banner of islam to engage in their destructive acts. we have to be clear about that. we have to be clear about that because, if we are going to deal with the problems that ed henry was talking about, if we are going to successfully reduced the terrorist threat, then we need all the allies we can get. the folks who are most interested in a war between the united states or the west and islam are al qaeda. that is what they have been banking on. fortunately, the overwhelming majority of muslims around the
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world are peace-loving, are interested in the same things that you and i are interested in. how can i make sure that i can get a good job? how can i make sure that my kids get a decent education? how can i enjoy my faith? how can i improve my lot in life? they have rejected this violent ideology for the most part. overwhelmingly. from a national security interest, we want to be clear about who the enemy is here. it is a handful of tiny minority of people who are in speaking -- who are engaging in horrific acts and have killed muslims more than anybody else. another reason it is important for us to remember that is because we have millions of muslim-americans, our fellow citizens in this country, they are going to school with our kids.
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they are all our neighbors. they are our friends. they are our co-workers. when we start acting as if their religion is some how offensive, what are we saying to them? i have muslims who are fighting in afghanistan, in the uniform of the united states armed services. they are out there putting their lives on the line for us. and we have to make sure that we are crystal clear for our sake and their six. they are americans. and we honor their service -- for our sakes and their sakes. they are americans. and we honor their service. we do not lead -- we do not
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differentiate between them and us. it is just us. that is a principle that i think is good to be very important for us to sustain. i think tomorrow is an excellent time for us to reflect on that. thank you very much, everybody. >> the assistant said -- the assistant tax treasury secretary speaks about the tax cuts on "newsmakers" at 6:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. tomorrow, a discussion about ending world hunger the rev.
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david beckham. live coverage of his remarks at 1:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, tomorrow. saturday marks the 50th anniversary of the signing of the sharon statement by a group of young conservatives at the home of william f. buckley jr.. seen by many as the founding documents of the modern conservative movement. the document was looked at in terms of its lasting influence, speakers including aaron colby. this portion is about one hour and 10 minutes. practicing chicken chip, rather than bnksmanship and her foreign >> when the hungarian freedom
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fighters rose up with the encouragement of radio free europe, so you -- soviet forces invaded, brutally crushing the hungarian should decline to hel. gop rested in the hands of eastern liberal republicans who tried to remove vice president richard nixon and from an 1856 ticket because he was quote not a creature of their making, but had written to same as the man who had sent alger hiss to jail. in the fall of 1955, conservatives could claim only a few obligations, human events being the most prominent. there were even fewer organizations, then the eucharist, the intercollegiate society of individualists, isi been an exception. newspaper columnist lake george
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sapolsky and john chamberlain and popular radio broadcasters like fulton lewis journal plied their trade, but liberals undercut arafat admits by describing them as part of the militant right-wing. how little has changed. cbs mike wallace invited tv viewers one evening to listen to fault lewis explned the attraction the far right has for crackpot fascist groups in america. but better times were coming. of course, articulate critics of the left was making itself heard. one was russell curt, a deceptivelsoft-spoken ademic whose vote come of the conservative mind exploded on the american team in the spring of 1953. it was a 450 page overview of conservative thinking over the
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past 170 years and a scathing indictment of every liberal nostra prehuman perfectibility to economic egalitarianism. but the first 50 reviews, 47 were favorable, including inco beyond in "the new york times" and "time" magazine, which devoted its entire book section to the conservative mind. with one book, russell curt big conservatism intellectually expectable and gave the conservative movement its name. conservatives begin to get organized. one of the first groups with the committee of 1 million against the admission of communist china to the united nations, chaired by dr. walter judd, which operated as a forgettable anti-communist forest for the next two decades. conservatives of both parties launched a new organization for america, chaired by clarence
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mania come up for a teamf notre dame moscow. its purpose was to serve as a conservative counterpart to the liberal americans for democratic action and encourage a realignment of parties with conservatives making up one party and liberals the other. but by and large, the right lacked focus. conservatives that areas, william f. buckley wrote, were uncoordinated and inconclusive. because the philosophy of freedom was not the next systematically in the university and the media. buckley decided a new journal was needed to come back to liberals, compensate for weakness in the academy enforce the energies of the emerging conservative movement. enter national review and its editor. a 30-year-old six-foot tall
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unspun tali with a flasing smile, bright blue eyes and a half british have southern drawl . buckley and his colleagues described it as a synthesis of e libertarian in anti-communist wing of american conservatism. they attack the u.n. and the social impulses of both parties in our first issue, buckley heard conservatives let us that all americans in a liberal world and therefore we conservatives were out of place, no matter. national review of ford's history links.. confident that a vigorous and incorruptible journal of conservative opinion could make a critical difference in the realms of ideas and politics. at the same time, the emergee
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of senator barry goldwater of arizona started conservative hearts beti faster. was it possible they asked themselves. could it be? was america ready for an unabashed conservative in the white house? goldwater was a man of plain taste, a cheeseburger supreme with a slice of raw onion and a chocolate shake for lunch in the sun in office. he was a man of old-fashioned virtues, petrie to some, hard work, faith in god. although a college dropout, he devoured history books about arizona and the west and the fred hijacks the road to serfdom. he was quickwitted, self-deprecating, once asked how he would respond to a soviet nuclear attack. he said the first thing he would do is to circle the wagons. he never smoked a cigarette or drink a cup o coffee, but kept
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a bottle of old crow and the refrigerator of his senate office for after 5:15. she became the cnservative leader when he collaborated with l. brent bozell, a seor editor of national review and one of his speechwriters to write a little book called the conscience of a conservative. published in the spring of 1960, it eventually sold more than 3 million copies, making it one of the most widely read logical manifestoes of the modern era, comparable in many ways to thomas paine's common sense. all the ingredients of national political movement were coming together, a charismatic political leader and barry goldwater, widely known popularizers coming young and old led by bill buckley, thinkers like a hijack, russell curt, richard weaver, milton
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friedman, all in their intellectual prime and two influential journals of opinion, fashion review in human events. movement leaders decided that next on the agenda was an organization of energetic young activists who would serve as the ground troops of conservatives. and so, in the fall of 1960, some 90 young conservatives founded young americans for freedom with a little help from older americans for freedom like l. buckley and that perilous, fearless conservative and presario, marvin lehman. beginning in fact playing the student committee created by david frank e. and f. kennedy in 1958, when both were college students in washington d.c., doug at georgetown, david george washington. now the national defense educion act contained a
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provision that a student had to sign an affidavit saying he was not a member of any subversive organizaon and was loyal to the u.s. government from him she was seeking a grant for his higher education. this reasonable stipulations did not fit very well with the american civil liberties union and similar groups. and the campaign was launched among left liberal students to eliminate the provision. "the new york times" of other established publications took up the cry in the name of free speech and civil liberties. undaunted, caddy and frankie organized a student committee, established chapts, elected officials come and testify before congressional committees, wrote articles, distributed literature answer to conservatives.
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it was the first major manifestation of what the always perceptive unstinting evidence described as a conservative revoked on the campus. the success of the student committee and particularly of goldwater's conscience of a conservative and bolder than conservatives to take action on behalf of goldwater at the 1960 republican national convention in chicago. now nixon was the a twist amongst republicans, but not of most conservatives, a critical distinction. in april, the midwesterner republicans endorse goldwater for president and by may, a use for goldwater vice president was organized by doug caddy and marvin lehman. was chaired by robert crowe of northwestern university. and in june, and americans for goldwater was formed, headed by dean clarence manion.
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at the convention in chicago, some gop conservatives, the young ones, conceited, yes, nixon had it in the presidential nomination, but they still pushed hard for goldwater for vice president. and now the story becomes a little more complicated when walter judd delivered an old-fashioned stemwinder of the keynote address, send me an evidence encouraged by marvin lehman organized a last-minute judd for vice president effort. l-lima maitre commented it was the only time in american politics that two vice presidential candidates had been financed by one credit card. [laughter] his. well, in the end, nixon was nominated and selected henry cabot lodge the u.s. ambassador to the united nations as his running mate. but goldwater, old water
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captured the hearts of conservatives coming on an old, with remarks he made of the delegates before withdrawing his name for consideration as president quotes, we ha lost election after election in this country the last several years, he said because conservative publicans get mad and stay home. now, i am for you. forget it, we've had a chance and i think conservatives have made a splendid showing at this convention. we've had her chance. we fight our battle. now let's put our shoulders to the wheel of nixon and push him across the line. and then, goldwater uttered this dream and we need challenge. this country is too important for anybody's feelings. this country and his majesty is too great for any man. be conservative or liberal to stay he and not work just because he doesn't agree.
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belasco of conservatives who want to take this party back and i think we can someday. let's get to work. well, within days of the chicago convention, yth organizers of the goldwater and judd drops, plus leaders of the midwest young republicans formed an terim committee for a national can server did youth organization. and on august 16, they issued a call to 120 outstanding young leaders across the nation to meet at graydon, the buckley family estate in connecticut. the primary organizers are old friends doug caddy and david frank e. did not temper their words. they wrote, america stands at the crossroads today. will our nation continue to follow the path towards socialism or will we turn towards conservatives on and
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freedom. the final answer to us? with america's youth. will our youth be more conservative or more liberal in future years? you can help determine the answer to this question. and then, echoing barry goldwater they said, now is the time for conservative used to take action, to make their full force and influence felt. and by action, we made political action. and so, during the weekend of september 9/11, 1960, under bright blue skies and a warm september sign, some 94 young conservatives came together to adopt a statement of principles, launch a national, political organizati and begin king history. [applause]
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>> thank you, lee. you've really set the tone extraordinarily well they are an msa you don't look like you've changed at all since we were together at the sharon conference. [applause] there is no doubt that i was the youngest person at the sharon conference. i was listed as being from northwestern university, but i hadn't eve go to norhwestern yet. i just graduated from high school. the reason i was there was because they graduated from the capital paid school and i was barry goldwater's page. ironically, it was a matter of fact this weekend is the 50th reunn of my class, which is why i'm not going to be with you for the rest of the committees because we have our reception tonight and our dinner tomorrow. so the page school is having its own 50th reunion at the same
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time that the sharon conference is being remembered 50 years later. what they got together extraordinarily well. and so there i was asked the person who knew. goldwater, had worked with barry goldwater and thought that it would be an appropriate thing for me to be involved with this. the first thing was that i left school here, left the page program and went directly to chicago for the republican national convention. well, you can imagine as an 18-year-old with a heavy experience this was for me. i was there and i was put in charge because i knew i was kind of the person who was supposed to make sure that barry goldwater got from one meeting to the next and we were setting him up with all the various state delegations to talk to them. and they were intensely interested. i was a member that. they knew they were going to be able to support them for vice president. there were intensely interested in what he had to say. barry goldwater come as you will
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remember, with an individual who we all know stood with such incredible -- for such incredible principles and the such a principled person himself. barry goldwaterhad exploded on the national scene because he beat t majority leader of the united states senate in1952. in six years later, he was the number one target of labor unions in the united states to be defeated. and it looked like he was probably going to go down, except that izona and the people in arizona burros behind him because of the print and it looked like he was probably going to go down, except that arizona and the people in arizona burros behind him because of the print by, a comfortable enough margin that he could reallythat and so then conscience of a conservative, which really exploded a result
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of the other things that were out there talking goldwater brought the political principles. and that of course is what made. goldwater such an incredibly job at the he got from one place i always remembered he would be stalked by a student. he was usually young person who would stop and of a conservative in what he goldwater always wanted to stop and talk to job is to tug on his sleeve as a senator we really need to get going. were already 30 minutes late to the next meeting here and to carry them at the convention
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which i can statute of limitations for ving expired i can probably safely was in charge of forging the needed our young people on the. and so each night i would and we had a printer wind up we rushed him up is easier to force the credentials. we rushed them to the printer and he would forge them for us. on the day of the nominations we had hundreds of these things made up another one of her students was on crouched in the aisles of the moment his name was put in the nomination they've never did quite find out what it really sitting there our
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young people here it was a great moment and certainly after the course into the veins of the young people the idea was you can't let this moment go. we have to do something. so the idea of turning this into into a permanent organization was we held a meeting on
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but anyhow, i was able to go, and my brother also was active at northwestern. we were two of the five people who represented northwestern at that meeting in connecticut, and it really was an extraordinary event. you can imagine for people of that young age to be called, if you will, to the home of what
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seemed like the god, the guru, of the group of william f. buckley, and to sit and his feet and listen to people like william f. buckley and others talk to was, it was an extraordinary event. but this is not just a dab session. everybody came with the idea that this was going to be a working meeting. and we had two objectives in mind at that meeting that had been set out at the chicago meeting that we said we wanted to do. we wanted to have a statement of principles that people could adhere to, and then we wanted a political organization. you had the intellectual elements of the conservative movement already in place, and they were beginning to have their influence felt through such things as the magazine's, -- magazines.
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it was stuck that there needed to be a political arm, one that could transform this into political action, and so, we wanted a statement of principles on the one hand that would be a call to arms to young people around the country, and then we wanted to form some kind of a political organization that they could use to translate to turn these ideas, this intellectual force, into practicality in the elections and the political scene, and that, of course, is what the sharron conference was about. -- the sharon conference. he sense of the intellectual challenge of having these discussions with people who were either my peers are actually older than i was and being so excited to be th all of these people comin and the idea we were actually forming something that we knew was real and that it was going to have --
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that they could have, and if history has shown it did have a significant influence on the conservative movement as it developed after that. we formed committees early on the first day. e committee to help decide what we were going to name it. a second how we were going to organize what kind of organization we wanted and another kennedy of course to draft the statement. now the sharon statement had been pretty much drafted by the time that we got there but there were some really very fierce discussions when we would get into our plenary session. you have to remember most of these young people at college republican experience and a young republicanxprience where you learn parliamentary procedure and how to bollix up a meeting with parliamentary procedure. i can see some of this audience know weeks ackley we are talking about here. and we do -- knew exactly,
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people new x ackley how to make sure the meeting either didn't go well or did go well and i remember carol olsen was originally presiding over it and finally just out of frustration turned over to the parliamentarian which i forget was -- bill madden, turned it over and sit here, you take it from here on and she stepped down at that point. but it was an extraordinary -- we had fierce debates about the sharon statement. should it directly use the word god and god church in principles or should remain basically a secular satement that control in the libertarians and other conservatives who are not of a particular faith? and it also -- how far should it go in its anti-communist statements? there were a number of key dates that took place over the statements. but just reading preparation for the remarks today. i'm really astonished by it.
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it really stands the test of time. now i'm not calling to be so bold as to sit here today, stand here today and tell you this is like the declaration of independence of the constitution of the united states. but it really does stand the test of time. and if youread this and teal those principles while circumstances have changed, communist empire -- soviet empire may not be there today but it has stood the test of time on the basic principles are ones that rally young the conservatives across the country. and such factors were cited, we would form chapters and colleges across the country. but of course, we needed to have some kind of a national organization and a place, head if he will command that is where the irrepressibly described, irreplaceable margaret lehman was such a critical nature with his own organization in the walk-in new york oering office space for our first executive
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director of allowing him to have space to really begin toput this thing together and also to buy he funding of until we began to reach out on our own. so the sharon conference was one of those moments where negative came together that were in the process of formation of were going -- people who were -- had the intellectual capacity but also wanted to have the political wherewithal, the militant arm if you will publicly in order to accomplish what we wanted to set out to do. so in looking bac on it, if were to say what were the key people and key things that made this happen certainly it could not have been first and foremost without barry goldwater. he was the impetus for this and it was his idea that brought all this together. but barry goldwater could not have been there as he frankly
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acknowledged for many times witut the likes of people like william f. buckley and the intellectual capacity of him. it couldn't have happened without more than lehman who did provide the organization and the structure, and if you will, the older more wise person to help guide us through the first few months and the first couple of years. they could not have happened without the likes of people like doug calfee and stan evans who drafted the sharon statement and people like david frankie. so it was the dirty best times if you will. was one of those moments i think all of us in our lives that were there will remember as a very special moment whee history was being made and history was made and i think today it has still has its effect on the political system in the united states.
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so i look forward to the opportunity to listen to some of the others and have this discussion continued here today. thank you. [applause] >> thank you in very much, both lee and jim. that is a wonderful setting of the stage of what is going to come after sharon. let me just reiterate a couple of things that may not have been mentioned or that i want to emphasize a little bit before i go on as to what happened afterward. first of all, of course, the conscious of the conservative, just months before the sharon statement was drafted. and by the time sharon can along it had been distributed to probably a couple of hundred thousand people. i know that by november, there
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were 500,000 copies in print. so, the ideas that were going to be in the sharon statement were pretty well discussed and were certainly in and the general conversation of conservatives. and as lee mentioned, until 1960 there was no convergence of intellectual conservatism and political operation. there had been olitical things out of course and barry goldwater and various others, but there really was a totally separate thing from the intellectual site that was going on. as lee mentioned russell kirk's but had been published in 53 and a good many books. bill buckley's, whitaker chambers and others, but they were very much isolated in the intellectual side and each one talked about a particular part of the conservative movement. bulkeley's book was an education. russell kirk's book was about tradition, whitaker chambers
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book was of communism, and none of them had really tried to merge it together, the conscience of the conservative really for the first time but was quick to be known as fusion as some began to happen. the was that the three various strands of the conservative movement were drawn together as one of movement. and actually until 68 or so there really wasn't much discussion of the movement per say. was a number of different things and people -- economists for example but a criticize the anti-communist because they said they are spending too much money on defense. thats taking things away from the economy. it's detrimental to the united states. and that sort of thing. so for the first time with the conscious of the conservative you have a unified statement. well, the sharon statement had pretty much the same principl outlined in it but in a very much -- and many fewer words than the conscious the conservative. it was, as jim pointed out,
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written by stan ans and a good many others, many of whom have had some part to play in the summer of 1960. another quote that goldwater made that he didn't mention in the 1960 onvention -- and i guess that was -- i don't know if it was to the convention floor itself for the group of students trying o get him to run -- but he sad this colin quote turn your group and to a permanent organization of young conservatives. the man is not important, the principles you espouse or. do this and i will support you in any way i can read that was really the call to action, and they took that of course to heart, and when they went to sharon. also of course remember that the people were trying to nominate a goldwater in 1960 were amateurs. they didn't have a political organization, a political operation. many of them had been perhaps
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invoed in a campaign here or there before, but they didn't have the expertise, the knowledge, the people leader had. all of that was going to be changed with what happened at sharon. so let me go through and talk abt some of the implications of sharon. i could go on for hours obviously and talk about all the things that young americans for freedom were going to do. i won't do that. i just want to talk but the broad principles that came abut because of sharon and some of the implications of a hat, and i shore in the discussion we are going to have afterwards, many of them who were there are going to bring up those things that happen in a subsequent decades. first of all, there was an immediate induction of the young people into politics. real politics. the first thing that happened after it was formed in september was the question whether or not to endorse nixon for president. he decided not to. and that was then a sort of an
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herd for the young conservatives to do because the cattle been involved in the young republicans before and the republican party even as goldwater said at the convention, traditionally supported where it was nominated. we, he decided that if they become a young the organization really wouldn't do much for nixon. and but if they did it might damage the position that they were trying to put themselves and apart from the republan party. huge implications. le you touched on them a little bit, bu the conservative movement of course has always been separate from the republican party which is one of its strengths. and i think in that particular activity that set the stage for what was going to happen later. the conservative movement forever would be out a bit of odds with the republican party. they thought of themselves may be as the heart and soul of the republican party. their job was much different, and as the younger twentysomething people began to realize that as they were going
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through the fall notcampaigning for nixon it educated them on what was to come and what they would do subsequently. the house i say, it had a huge implication sitting the conservative movement apart as a intellectu and philosophical organization, not simply as another are of the republican party that would elet anybody that can along. came along. secondly, every quickly, conservatives learned leftist tactics. in january, 1961, there was a major controversy as to whether or not the house and american activities committ should be refunded. and the left had put together demonstrations in front of th white house to protest the act ing refunded. a group of young people from young americans for freedom got together and had a counter protest in front of the white house and the actually got more
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press than the left did. it was actually national the covered -- national recovered. in the process, they realized that there were the left had which they could use to their advantage. they realized how you could get a relatively small number of people together and get major national press and have huge implications, and as a matter of fact, the act was refunded by an overwhelming vote, probably at least partially because of what young americans for freedom did. and as one commentator put it at the time he said the use of political propaganda passed from the use of the left to the use of the right. they learned how to run an organization, how to organize and make things happen. right away, after sharon in office was set up. they started raising money, they learned parliamentary procedure. of course as jam mentioned many of them knew it from the young
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republicans. they selected a board of directors and that for this report. there were lots of internal politics of course and those continued on at the meeting is forever. and one of the things they learned was either how to avoid those or how to win your battles, things tremely important for many of the things that went on after that. they recruited 25,000 members within a number of months. obviously, simply the mechanics of organizing that and keeping track of them was substantial. they organized about 100 chapters across the country within six or eight months. again, staying in touch with them all the other things you have to do to keep them going was a huge undertaking. and of course, all of this was done by young people who were not getting paid very much, who were running the organization most of them or not any older than the people, the college kids that they were attracting, and as somebody said they really
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weren't -- they were the ones that put it together. in other words, there were no older people running the thing. they were the young people who had been at sharon. in each one of these things they learned what thewere doing. they learned how to put on a rally. in the spring of 1962, feb i guess it was, they put on a rally at madison square garden -- yet americans for freedom did. thank you, lee to 18,000 people were there. they packed the place. they had john tower's book, barry goldwater spoke, bill buckley of course. lots of others. it made above the fold on "the new york times" and people were astounded this many conservatives even existed, they would come to new york city. and again, it was put on by these young students who had come in the press, learn how to do something like that, and they learned what the
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implications work of putting on such a rally that would -- could have the dramatic impact that it did they began to educate thousands of students in the conservative principles these obviously were not principles being taught on american college campuses in those days. yaf started having lectors, they had debates, they circulated films, they had all sorts of other things to go on. the distibuted books, published the new guard that went to students, ther things and all of that served to educate not only the 25 bills and students who wereaf members but for every one of those there were probably ten others the were touched by what they did. i remember my own case and start a chapter i 1962i think what i was in college we would have monthly meetings where we would attract hundreds of people and bring speaker's room and so on and was the first time most of those people heard this stuff at they had been indoctrinated
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by the left-wing college professors and suddenly there were students who were bright, attractive, who could make the case, and it was a revelation. they were also, themselves, they became extremely well scooled in a conservative fund. the things distributed in the debates and so on the yaf studentsecome the best debaters. most of you probably read rick perlstein's book. he is a lefty and he didn't like it but it's a pretty good book. it is well reported. one of the things he said and i quote, yaf read twice as much as anyone else. the enemy ideas and their own delighting and dangling arguments and slaughtering them in debate. ase lock of buckley's now tormented social scientists and colleges large and small. [laughter] [applause]
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these young yafers learned how to take on powerful interest. the firestone company for example planned to build a plant to make tires and romania, communist romania. yaf felt a was a bad idea and started having demonstrations. they pickete firestone, they actually had pickets in the indianapolis 500 firestone is actually pulled back and they didn't build the plant. they hadsimilar things they did with ibm, selling computers to soviet union. there were confrontations with pepsi-cola and a number of other companies and somimes yaf one and sometimes they didn't. they got national attention in the process and a recognized probably more than anything else that you could take on the powerful interests and sometimes you could win. they confronted the left on the campus. again, a tremendously important thing. professors that were teaching, the students were not used to being confronted. the of the place all to themselves. surely there were some isi
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students but there were more cerebral and from time to time probably russell kirk would come along or someone like that and give a talk. but yaf actually had deates, confrontations, they would set up things and even in the classrooms to challenge what the left had to say on the campus. it had a tremendous impact. it made the 90% of the students who really were not publicly affiliate of realize that there was another cause, another pot of view, and i sure many of them became affiliated with that. and t certainly set the universities and the professors on age. there is a quote that i found from bill buckley. he said even now the world continues to go left. but all over the land dumfounded professors are remarking the extraordinary revival ofthe hard conservative sentiments in the student bodies. it was an extraordinary thing. infil long term i think as you look at it broadly, yaf had a
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great impact simply on the people that it had attracted. it was a breeding grnd for future conservative leaders. congressman, judges, lawyers, activists, writers, all sorts of other people. it bred conservave cadres that span acros the country. the cause of the professional lives. these students who undertook these things aside from the politics simply learned how to do all these things, they learned that they could be done and as i guess he's been to tell us where some of those people went, where they wound up is extraordinary. at that time, as i recall, we didn't think it was particularly extraordinary. we were fighting these battles and we lost as probably good many more than we won. i think it was richard that told me one day for him was lik going to work every day and you didn't really think you were having broad impact on what was going on. but we did, if you look back on
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it, we had huge impact. another thing, by the wa, speaking of richard i have to mention that yafers really invented direct mail fund-raising. richard did it, but it was for yaf. until then it was a fledgling operation where things were kep on three by five cards and things are being mailed and eventually of course as it went along as yaf realized the need to make money for lots of people, taking what barry goldwater in '64 and expanded on that, there is one by the way, at one point i -- a fact i like to recount. people forget about and the vast impact it had bringing all of these donors into the movement is in 1960 when nixon ran for president he had 12,000 donors. 1964 when goldwater and he had over 1 million donors and that transformed the republican party. it meant that for the first time, the bankers of new york were not funding everything.
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but people were and it totally changed things. but i think even yaf had something to do with that. by the way, th have learned to do that, and of course it transcended to the cold water campaign. -- goldwater campaign. many cut their teeth on yaf. again as swain will tell us, that's probably the thing that made as much diffence as the politics. the people that had produced went on to do all the things the conservative movement has been giving the last 50 years which had become such a great part of american society so let me stop there and turned over to wayne. [applause] >> well, i have to apologies to make. first of all, there are too many distinguished individus in the audience that probably should have introduced and recognized but i am not going to because that would tak the remainder
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of this kind. but we are so pleased there's a number of formal congressmen in the audience that we appreciate all the efforts that they have done over the years. in the number of former national chairman of the organization, national directors and many others. so, when we break i hope you all will have an opportunity with the name tags to visit and get to thank those who have come before you or who haveworked with you over the years. second, i try to do due diligee putting together my book but somehow i must admit it was oly today that i found out that jim kolbe is the person that fortune of those credentials. [laughter] so that did not get mentioned in the book. i just want to take a couple minutes to talk about who were these people, 94, 96, individuals who came to sharon to form an organization? but before i talk about those individuals, i have to say there
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were some senior conservatives there. and i think it is acommentary on what was the conservative movement as of 1960. they were referred to as senior conservatives. those who serve as mentors for the young people who work meaning to found in new organization. but what is ascinating in a commentary on the conservative movement at the time is that five of the senior conservatives, quote on quote, were all in their thirties. frank was 34, bill buckley at his home of course the meetings were being held, had reached the ripe age of 35. vic mali own, head of the intercollegiate society of individualists, as it was then called, was 36. and both bill rusher and more than a policeman or the old men in the organization of referred to as oafs, old americans for
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freedom. i must confess that this point is hard to remember when i was in my thirties and yet these were the old men of the conservative movement of 1960. the only one who was an exception was to charles edison the form new jersey governor who served as secretary of the navy under franklin delauro roosevelt, and was true of the senior citizen and a mentor to the organization. but even though these so-called senior conservatives were present, indeed give some remarks and someencouragent, the weekend was totally under e direction of the young conservatives all of whom were in their teens or early twenties or 20s. it would be a few years later of course when jerry rubin would make his famous comment you shouldn't trust anyone over 30. but as early as 1960 these young
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conservatives were following the that soon to be predicted that vice. historian matthew stressed this point in his commentary on the meetings. as he said, it was the young man o made the decisions and shaped the group. the meeting at bulkeley's tallman sharon, conn illustrates the point. although buckley, leedman and several over 30 attended the conference at buckley's tom, the on the conservative leaders for the mission statement, took care the logistics. now most of these young people attending the gathering could be described as depression babies. having been born before the attacks on pearl harbor that brought the united sttes into world war then under way. a few of the yonder participants were at wrld war ii babies but
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mainly decisions on creating the new organization were being made by those born in the 1930's. not counting the senior conservatives that we have mentioned, 96 or per 94 younunununununathered to decide on blding a new organization. of the 78 currently college students. undergraduate, graduate or law school students. and the remaining 18 listed no affiliation with an academic institution. nearly all of those, however, having previously graduated from llege. and i think this is an important point because at a time in 1960 when the vast majority of high school students were not yet enrolling in college, or at least an four year colleges, this was a relatively elite group. the 25% of those students were from the ivy league colleges, with jeal providing eight
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undergraduate all students. another 25% attended wt could be labeled as private selective enrollment institutions with northwestern most prominent with as jim mentioned five attendees. about 20% came from major state universities, and about 25% attended religiously affiliated colleges, predominantly roman catholic. and finally, there were four students from other government oriented colleges including two from hunter college. now, the 18 without a college affiliation listed sme or recent graduates like carol paulson and doug whereas others like the edward and stan evans had begun their successful careers. these young graduates were already assuming key positions in the nation's conservative movement of the early 1960's. a small number of the
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participants were the offspring of promineconservatives. campaign, evans, mcintyre, risk and common name is recognized to the few americans following the conservative politics at the time. but most of them came from either a political families or those whose politics was not a prominent part of their identification. indeed many of those present were in fact rebels with a cause. the name of course of stan evans book. as polshek men, the first national chairman of the organization who came to an untimely death in his early 20s, mid-20s, soon to be chosen as the national chairman described the situation my parents thought franklin and eleanor roosevelt as one of the greatest heroes who ever lived. rebeling from that concept.
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s and most political gatherings of the time mails predominated, but the ratio wasn't quite as overwhelming as one might expect. there were 16 females and 80 males among the attendees. this group of less than 100 young men and women produced the outstanding leaders of the conservative movement that took hold and become dominant in american society during the last years of 20th century. consider just a fe and that is all we have time for. of those who attended the sharon conference and what they have accomplished. lee edwards as we have already seen the author of more than 20 books and a distinguished fellow of the conservative thought at the heritage institution -- foundation. you can tell i don't live here in d.cbecause i get these names mixed up. james kolbe, a member of congress and there is on a 22 years, the only republican elected to congress from southern arizona.
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michael ulin, visiting professor at claremont university in claremont college. john, ph.d. from the university chicago who held numerous positions in the nixon, rean and both bush administations and is now a senior fellow at the hudson institute. howard phillips, founder of the conservative caucus and three times was a candidate for presidt of what is now known as the constitution party. carol paulson, former -- served nine years as the consumer product safety commission. irkallur, chairman of the lord for the kohler industries. thomas riley chairman of the board for the riley industries and now a trustee at indiana university. bruce, longtime vice president of the international truck and engine corporation. then there were the future journalists such as ross mackenzie the editorial page editor for many years of the richmond times dispatch.
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stan evans, editor of the indianapolis news. bill, editor at the "reader's digest" for many years. john kolbe, brother of james, political comnist for e phoenix gazette and the arizona republic. ken thompson, editorial page editor for the dallas morning news. jane campion, former newspaper and now president of jameson books. dad frank d. kolevar of ten books. doug thank you cady, author. alan bruseghineditor-at-large at the human events and i have left out so many others like couldn't mention. the point should be clear these are outstanding leaders to contribute much to the making of the united states as a more responsible and conservative nation. that eventful gathering 50 years ago not only created a new organization and adopted, would become the most concise and
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implicit statement of conservative principles, but it also produced a wealth of individuals who would provide leadership of the conservative movement over the remainder of the 20th century and up to the present. in this sense the conference can be seen as one of the pivot points in the political history of the united states. thank you. [applause] i think we have to individuals who have microphones in the audience if individuals have some questions for any of he panelists this would be the appropriate time. or comment. markowitz rhodes. >> question forthwith lee edwards. >> so everyone knows the was your name. >> former illinois state senator
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and you mentioned for america which i believe you said was headed by walter judd, is that correct? >> it was headed by dean clarence mannion. >> you didn't ention another runner, the students for america headed up by bob munger and since jim kolbe pened the door to the professions, i was told the newspapers in california accused students of america as being secretly fnded by the vigilant when and for the amendment, and i am here to tell you is true. it was al's neighbor who came up with se of the money at the suggestion of none other th the good witch of the north from the wizard of oz so let's remember billy and the pantheon of heroes ends. [laughter] [applause] >> thank you. any other comments, recollections, questions?
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yes, ron. >> ron robinson. i want to ask a question of a panelists that ties in both to sharon and his subsequent consequences. and today most organizations if you decide to join you just joined or send a small donation or something and you are off and running but young americans for freedom made it a requirement to have to agree with the sharon statement before you could become a member and there's a lot about the sharon statement that has already been touched on but no one has touched on t implications of that. based on your own experience as yaf leaders in the early days were the days that your yaf leaders, what strengths or weaknesses did you find in making people agree with your statement or principles before they could even become a member? >> why don't we start with lee? >> this is an application of what we call space centralism.
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some in the audience will recognize that phrase. i think the in the beginning yaf wanted to make sure that anybody who came in was responsible, respectable, and so i think that's one of the reasons why the lead that down. you have to remember 1960 the john birch society was very, very powerful, and we did not want to be linked with them or tart with that particular brush. i don't recall the date about that particular provision, ron. i think maybe the libertarian sense might have caused me maybe to vote against that. but i don't recall. >> like lee, i have completely forgotten about that until it's just been raised here now but i think from both sides the
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genesis of that was from both sides of the concern about the john birch society over one side and the idea that a very liberal or leftist student groups might infiltrate from the other side so it is useful to read that statement and say you agree with it and the principals in them. that is one of the reasons we did. and i never found it to be particularly onerous burden for people not to that long a statement, and you wanif you are going to be a member of the organization you want them to read this and get excited about it, and adherto it. so it was never a big problem. >> actually, i don't remember that tha was a requirement. l.i.e. worked in the national yaf office of 1965 for close to a year, and i have no recollection. of course, we were getting often mailbags full of members every week, and we may have sent them
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a copy of this demand. the other thing i can remember is hat when i was in college i had a letter from what seemed like a particularly bright student the diversity of wisconsin,and so i went to see him and i signed him up for yaf and collected his $5 i think it was david keene and i have no recollection so. [laughter] the other thing i want to say -- [laughter] tre's no implition in that statement. >> none whatsoever, no. [laughter] the other thing, just to correct one thing, in the early days there were a good many virtuous in yaf, and remember the real controrsy with the burke society didn't really start until the middle 60's. when ronald reagan ran for governor in 1966, he was able to put them down. it was a big factor in the goldwater campaign 1964. goldwater was tarred with being
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affiliated with the burke society. he didn't really handle it one way or the other. i think he just let it go over. but -- and linda buckley royte his peace? it was considerably later. >> 62. >> remember that was -- this was disassociated from robert welch. but in the early days yaf and the birch society did things together. they did on an international basis -- >> please don't say that publicly. [laughter] everything now aren't we? >> nope. >> question in the back, actually three or four of them. the gentleman closest to the middle i think had his hand upon first. >> thank you. mr. murdoch -- >> murdoch has never been a limit on anything. [laughter] >> i should go stand over there on the far right. a senior fellow at the atlas
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economic research foundation and syndicated columnist at scripps howard news service and wind folks on the right or the far right the case may be gathered with sometimes diffident to beat ourselves as either conservatives or libertarians, and i'm wondering if the sharon conference, did you see those divisions and were they very distinct? word de miners differences or serious cam in the conservative on real veus libertarian sector? >> i don't remember that those were distinct camps at the time, the conservative and libertarian ideas. i just don't remember them being a critical issue. no. my answer would be no. >> i have to say those differences came out in the discussion of whether or not the word god should be in the statement, the sharon statement, and also those who were arguing
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against this inclusion did not identify themselves as libertarian, we knew that they were in fact libertarian. and so there were some divisions. but i don't think -- i think probably for the greater good people were trying to keep those kind of distinction is under control. >> i guess maybe i didn't articulate very well but i agree there were those distinctions, those discussions but they didn't fall down. they didn't say here's the libertarian position and the conservative religious position. those ere not being used. >> and carol, you want to get to that. is that your recollection also? >> you can see this entire event on our website, c- span.org. just go to search, and type in the word "sharon." >> the father of modern
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community organizing. the book is still used as a blueprint for bringing about social change. >> it defies what a rabble rouser is supposed to be. >> one man spent 10 years working for alinsky, and he is tonight on c-span's "q&a." this week on "prime minister's questions," the return to the house of commons following the summer recess, and nick clegg filled in for david cameron to to the loss of his father. the communications chief is accused of tapping into celebrity voice mail. they also talk about aid to pakistan. "prime minister's questions," tonight at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span.
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now, a discussion on the 2010 midterm elections hosted by the democratic governors association. the spokes people include former clinton associates. this is about one hour. >> thank you for being here. we're going to talk about 1994 versus 2010. we will look at how the election is going to unfold in the weeks ahead. we have a great panel today. starting from the right, harold ickes, former deputy chief of staff for president clinton, paul begala, senior adviser to president clinton, dee dee myers, former press secretary for president clinton, and nathan daschle, executive director of the dga.
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arguably, they are four of the best minds in politics. the understand dynamics. they understand dynamics bid to understand how things are going to play out as well as anyone in the country. i'm going to start off with opening remarks. we will have discussion, then open it up to questions from the audience and the press. to paint a picture of where we are right now, i think it's fair to say that this is a volatile election and a volatile electorate. we have seen is in the polls, the changing way that these polls seemingly fluctuate. we have seen this in generic ballot that go from plus 10 in one week to a time in another. there's been a lot of discussion about whether this is a wave election, the way that 1994 was arguably a wave election. i would put it into an ellicott that this is more of a
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whiplashed election. -- i would put it differently, that is more of a whiplash election. democrats have let republicans and the debate to some extent. soldme extent, we've not out policies has significantly as we could or should half -- we have not sold our policies as seen differently as we could have or should have -- as significantly as we could have or should have. what is fascinating is how contrary i would make the argument that this is not necessarily a wave election as some of the pundits and others make the point. the stakes in this election are clearly very significant, said especially when we talk about governor street redistricting, the implications for 2012, -- especially when we talk about governors. redistricting, the implications for 2012. i want to highlight what are some key insights that people should focus on as we move
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ahead. as difficult and challenging as is -- election season is for democrats, what is also interesting is when you look at where the reality of the gop and the republican party is. the gop brand is broken. it is as unpopular today as it was in 2006, when democrats picked up a significant sea. in poll after poll, the gop is still less popular than democrats. in the recent "wall street journal" poll, democrats were at 36, republicans were a30. the gop is in the midst of a brutal civil war. we have seen this play out again and again in critical states. it has profound implications not only for governors' races, but for all of the national races. this has created significant targeted opportunities for democrats that the panelists -- needs and in particular -- natha n in particular -- will talk
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about. when you look at a recent cnn poll, the majority of the voters blamed bush and the republicans for the economic woes. even when there were asked, without bush or obama inhe question, they still blame republicans more than democrats. the one key thing that distinguishes this election that is the key dynamic to look toward is the whole notion of the enthusiasm gap. closing this gap over the next 60-plus days is the most critical thing for democrats to do. if we can do that, do that successfully, what you will see is a change of the dynamics of this election potentially dramatically. in stark contrast, i would say, to previous elections, you have the ability of democrats, particularly in the governors' races, to make a strong contrast between their vision as to how they will move the country forward as well as what the
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democrats -- sorry, the republicans, arguably a very extreme agenda and the implication that they have for their states. given that as the context, i will turn it over to the panelists. this will be a question for all -- i will start with harold. to us your thoughts about a story line of 1994 versus -- give us your thoughts on the story line of 1994 versus 20103 how can democrats governor's mitigate what many are talking about as a wave election? >> first of all, it is a different year, by definition -- i will start with that fact. there are clearly parallels to 1994, and i think there are pretty serious the distinctions. it seems that the series distinctions are that we democrats were asleep at the switch in 1994.
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we were complacent, we or smog, and to put it bluntly -- we were smug, and to put it bluntly, we were again. that is not the case today. we have been on red alert for a long, long time. no. 2 is that the republicans were identified in 1994. you mentioned this. they were unified in 1994. people forget the contract with -- some of us call it the contract on america. dee dee and i were talki about that. the white house was pretty smug out that. "no one is going to listen to that." newt gingrich, think of him what you may, and we have a lot of him -- he had atampa -
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lot of thoughts. the tea party has a downside for us and in terms of energizing the base that may not be as energized today. finally, the governors are democrats, but they are not of washington, and they are continually making that case. they provide services and are balancing tough budgets and are making tough decisions people in -- and are making tough decisions. people in states don't necessarily associate them with the washington agenda. before shiftingt to cover, that we have a two central points. one is independents. we have to have enough to carry these statistics. -- to cover these districts.
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two, we have to carry our base. our base is unhappy, pissed off, rightfully so. politics is a long time, top business. it is fine when the tides are running with you. but you have got to be there when the tides are running against you read my exhortation to democrats is that the tides may be running against us, but you of goto get out the and work. there are 60 guys -- 65 days left and you have got to go out and make it happen. >> i may be the only person in the white house who cursed more than half a world. -- than harold. it is interesting that you have covered -- gathered three of the architects of the greatest democratic debacle in history. [laughter] that is really lovely. my advice to democrats in 2010
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is three words -- build an ark. it is not a wave election, it is a tsunami election. now, you can survive, if you have something to carry you through it. let me pick up the last point howell ma -- harold made. the anti-washington, not anti- democrat. the republican brand move up, for the reason harold stated. newt gingrich d a coherent vision for his party. as theemocratic brand has declined, the republican brand declined more. anderson cooper interviewed as the head of the tea party express, and she said, "we are angrier with republicans than with democrats."
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this looks like a wave election and are things -- there are things the democrats can do to .itigate that t in state elections, it is not a wave election. it is an anti-washington election. we lost 10 governors' seats in 1994. i don't think that is going to happen thisime around. there are two big things going on at the same time, and this is what is excited about this year. number one is that sometimes you have a wave election, and all you ought to do is paddle a canoe. but the other rule is that candidates and campaigns matter. they are sort of at war here. the wave is gog to republicans, but the candidates and campaigns are favoring democrats. democrats are better prepared and they have better candidates this time around, they have more money in many cases, and they
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are going into a map that is pretty favorable for them. there is a pretty strong chance that democrats, for example, hold the governorship in new york, the third-largest state. there is a really good chance the democrats can pick up the vernor's seat in florida, california, and even my beloved texas, not to mention georgia. there is a whole lot of people that live in those five states. it's a tossup in illinois, to hold the governorship. that is a big deal. if we can do that, that tells you is not a wave. in texas, where i grew up, if that is a tossup -- texas is south carolina on steroids, politically. if that is a tossup, it is not a way or the republicans. bill white, democratic candidate, former mayor of houston, popular, successful
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mayor, taking not rick perry, who has been governor along with -- taken on rick perry, who has been governor longer than any governor in texas history, and they are tired of them. bill white as the perfect response, that he is the anti- perry. he will spend 99% less time fixing his hair. [laughter] perry is just out of step with the times. when sarah palin resigned as governor as first- c-span.org -- governor of her state, rick perry became the dumbest and prettiest governor in america. we have a chance of picking up a big, big states. >> i always hate when i agree with begala.
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it makes me feel like a loser. [laughter] i like to think of him as the biggest loser. which he is. he primarily, harold and i can testify, was responsible for 1994. [laughter] my memory of election day 1994 was that i was the last dope standing in the white house driveway. everybody else was going home. the only thing i could think of it to say was, "in kansas, kathleen sebelius was just elected insurance commissioner, and that is a really red state." that is how bad things were. i agree with what harold and part of what paul said. onof the differentiating factor is that in 1994, democrats were in charge for 40 years.
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republicans could climb to do things and away, and there was no evidence to suggest that their programs were not going to work, that they cannot do it, that their contract with america was not the contract on america. it was easy for the republican party to pay themselves as a different kind of animal. there was unity. there was much more unity in the republican party. the contract was very specific, not the broad platitudes we are going to hear from john boehner next week. it was specific pieces of legislation. the party was so unified at that all but two republican members of congress signed onto it. we still completely ignored it and thought it was not going to go anywhere. there was another element, another kind of unifying thing -- we all ran against ross perot in the 1992 campaign, and
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thought he was ridiculous. but remember how much traction he got on the idea of balanci the budget. the thing on independent voters anmoderates, it seems like a common-sense thing to do. there waone of the themes of e 1994 election, at the republican call to balance the budget. then the controlled congress for years and what did we get? a doubling of the federal deficit, and never proposed a balanced budget. we have seen what republican leadership looks like. it is a huge difference. that is one of the reasons we have seen the republican brand diminish. it is impossible for them to argue -- they are trying to run as the fiscal sanity party, which the facts completely undermined their argument. the national context is much different than it was in 1994. also, the press has been talking about this nonstop for months.
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there was not as the conversation about, oh, my god, how many seats the democrats going to lose when the republicans take over? it was a very different in armond -- very different environment. people are attuned to the fact that democrats could lose the congress. the country does not want it to every office to the republicans. they just don't want that. and the states are different. it is an anti-incumbency wave, i totally agree with that. hawaii is that the same as florida and california's -- not is not the same as florida and california is not the same as colubrid i'm from california -- not the same as colorado. i'm from california, and california is a tossup. midwood spent $20 million over the summer -- against -- meg
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whitman spent $20 million over the summer against jerry brown, who did not spend a dime, and it is still possible. although schwarzenegger had almost two complete terms and he cannot get along with the legislature. the republican legislatures nuts. they do not want to work with the governor was not a right winger. she cannot run as a bright winter. jerry brown was -- she cannot run as a right winger. jerry brown was first governor in the 1970's. peop cannot believe that the republicans provide a panacea. they are ary, but they want solutions, particularly at the state level. they want practical and common sense leadership. i think that is why there are
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opportunities out there for democrats and it is not going to be awake in governor's races. -- a wave in governor's races. >> let me address what is on everyone's minds right now. carville couldn't make it. [laughter] that is why i am here. this year they are making bold predictions. 38 is what they think it will have at the end of november. not going to happen, and i will tell you why. the difference between the republican party now and the republican party of 1994 -- this party is ruled by division and cynicism and extremism. number one, this party is that the wounded -- party is badly wounded. the republican party grant is as
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low as the democrat party ran. there is no clamoring for a return to republican leadership. the polls show the spread their message is one of the cynicism. -- the polls show this. the message is one of cynicm. every time the president unveils sunday to help the country, the republicans yell no. that is not what voters want to hear. two, you have the gop civil war, and that is our real phenomenon. when people talk about the enthusiasm gap, that is what people talk about. there's a lot of noise on the right, but that is not in these as some other republican spread that is a battle between a -- the right -- is not enthusiasm for the republicans, it is a battle between the right and the far right. there are only two candidates running this year -- there are the tea party candidates, rick
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scott and florida, bill brady in illinois, and then you have the candidates scarred by the tea party, like meg whitman in california, who had to go so far to the right to n the nomination that she is mounted in the general. .- wounded in the general t dga is playing offense. there are seats that we think we can pick up. this the electorate is not a pro-republican electorate and i think we have it at points to prove it. we will pick up not only a geographically diverse number of states, but some of the big states. that will say a lot about where the country is. it will give democrats something to brag about on election night. >> you have a republican party that is divided. you have our republican party brand that is less popular or
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unpopular today as it was in 2006. you have our republican party that is blamed for the economic well -- you have a republican party that is blamed for the economic woes the country faces more so than obama and the democrats. i will ask paul first, how are we losing to these guys? >> it sucksto be the party in power with 9.6% unemployment. people say the democrats have communication problems. no, they have a reality problem. the economy sucks. at the citadel, the states are broke. -- at the state level, the states are brooke road again to this dichotomy between a -- washington and -- the state are broke.
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i get to this economy -- again to this dichotomy between washington and the states. the people angry about the deficit in washington, for which blamed thengly president, are also angry about state defics, and it is republics who screwed that up. yet i understand why there is a way of going on out there. you cannot walk into an economy this bad and expect people will throw laurels at you. >> i will give another question, to dee dee. what is th message here for governors, a gubernatorial candidates, to penetrate what we understand is it tough economic but in esent,
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states, which you already mentioned, democratic candidates are competitive or a head. state after state. what is the message to focus on to win over the moderates and independents who are not goi to the repubcan brand but are still concerned? >> to use the old adage of politics, all politics is local. the candidates that doing well are proposing real solutions. it is impornt to keep the focus on how many of these problems were created by republican policies. but as bill clinton would say ad nauseam, all elections are about the future. we hve to maintain some focus on how we got into this situation and how republican policies were largely responsible, but also to focus on the future. one of the specific challenges -- what are the specific
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challenges states? even in this environment, optimism is important. every election, with the possible as caption -- with the possle exception of richard nixon in 1968 and 1972, the optimistic candidate always wins. optimism is born from confronting reality and having a plan to move forward. it cannot make it all about how bad the other guy is. it is abo the future. >> i will shift a little bit in terms of a focus. when you talk about governor's races, 37 governors' races. the state in particular in this election are profound for one factor, intending redistricting, and the impact that will ha on the country ahead. to harold, if you could talk
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about that, at the media in particular focus is on the federal and the national dynamics. this story, which is critical, if not more significant for the years ahead, really has not gotten the attention it deserves. could you talk about that what the stakes and implications are? >> i agree with you, and more importantly, ed gillespie, haley barbour, and karl rove i agree with you. they understand as a general national republicans have a much more profound understanding of the importance of governorships that democrats do. you see the national republican leadership put their weight behind raising money and seek to increase numbers from their current 24 up to 30, and some republican leadership have talked about 38 governors'. we ought to hold th to the
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highest staard, for two reasons. one, they want to control state houses. two, they understand that this year is not unique, but close to unique in the context of reapportionment and redistricting. they have their eyes to refocus on redistricting. it is a simple message -- they have their eyes and very focused on redistricting. it is a simple message, and when i talk to people about the pocketbook, they get it, but they don't think about it. rove and company have only to look to 2000. i would give you three examples. pennsylvania -- virtually every state has the legal right to engage in redistriing, and most of them will engage in redistricting, and that deals with the house of representatives. if people are interested in the future of the house of
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representatives, they have to worry about redistricting, as well as local offices. in 2002, pennsylvania loss registered because -- lost a district because they lost population they ended up netting four republican seats for the 2002 election. florida got two congressional districts through reapportionment. a republican governor, republican legislature. they ended up, after all redistricting, netting four republican seats. two seats alone nett -- two states alone netted four republican seats. haley barbourand a sense that even if the democrats -- understand that even if the democrats hold seats this year,
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they are confident that if can take the house i. texas netted six republican seats. now, they had time to lay down their -- they had tom delay down there. that is the reali, and it had very profound implations. think back to california. california in 1980 went through redistricting. they worked that system r, and they locked down california bid -- subtly as -- they or to that system hard, and they walked down california as a democratic state for decades.
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redistricting has a very profound short-term and long- term implications for democrats, and also has an impact on the 2000 count -- on the 2012 presidential race. we want to win them, but it has profound collateral side effects, if you will. >> and building on the points harold said, in terms of the stakes of these governors races, dga is engaged in these races in a number of ways, and had come up with competitors on the republican side to -- hand-to- hand combat with competitors on , ledepublican side,, rga by haley barbour, who is very good at raising money. talk about the strategy for dga.
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what is the strategy for the next 60 days, what is the focus, and had you not just expand the field, but in states where is going to be a tough race? >> well, it is a great question. it's almost like we planned it that way. just yesterday, dga unveilea strategy for the fall, project extreme gop taover. -- makeover. we can only play in states where we can make a difference. we will invest in states where we think we can affect the outcome and conserve our resources and use them wisely and strategically. number two, keep a local. governors are here to create jobs and invest in schools and deliver health care and services efficiently. they don't go in d.c. and a vote on federal issues.
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republicans will try to trap them into getting involved on federal issues, and it is a trap. governors deal with local issues. no. 3 is a raying the base. paul mentioned it earlier, at this is something we can do and we have to do. just last week we raised $1 million from on-line supporters the parent company of fox news's contribution to the republican governors association. our supporters came out in a show of defiance raised $1 million for dga. it is that type of rally of the base that we have got to do -- rallying of thease that we of got to do. and we have to shine the light on the repubcan spread the types of candidates they are puing up the -- this year are -- we have to shine the light on republicans. the types of candidates they are putting up this year are not fit to lead. when you think of the maine
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republican -- maine republican party adopted it tea party platform as its own. he wants to teach creationism in schools, and he wants to throw out the bill that prevents the employment disimination ordinance. he sarah palin --picked candidate in minnesota thinks it the economy is faltering because waiters and waitresses are making too much money. he wants to strip away the minimum wage. he has appeared with the donated money to a christian group that has advocated -- appeared with and donated money to a chrtian group that h advocated the execution of homosexuals. in illinois, a candidate
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advocates the mass gassing of animals, which i still don't understand. and rick scott, the single largest medicare fraud in history. he pleaded the fifth at 75 times, including "are you currently the ceo of columbia healthcare?" he pleaded the fifth on that. the real issue is what kind of governor he would be. the type of person with that distain for government should not be governor of importance to it like -- should not be governor of an important state like florida. if we focus on its core elements, we will do well in november. >> for those who would like to ask questions, plee come up to the mike, and after a few questions from the audience, we will take questions from the press, if there are any. second last question.
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in particular to harold, paul, and dee dee, who were in the white house, what is the role of the white house in governor's races, making sure we win the critical governor's races? when you were there, the advice you have to the white house, changes, if any, to their focus? i will start with harold. >> i assume he would start with paul. [laughter] they can raise money. money will be very tight. i don't know what you doing on any of this, but when i was at the white house, it is something that we focused on. two, i think the white house has a very strong message to kerri, a positive and either negative,
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-- strong message to carry, positive or either negative. shining a light and republicans. they have no message. they have the message of no on everything. it started with the first stimulus bill. i know we don't like to use the word stimulus and more as democrats. but there was high hopes that it would be but partisanship, and there should have been. the country and the world was on the brink of a massive depression, brought about by the prince of wall street and the republican policies. it was not one republican vote in the house of representatives, not one, and only three in the united states sene. it seems to me that from that point forward, it has been no, no, no, one or message.
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i think it is turned off independent -- once core core message. i think it is turning off independents. the president has the biggest megaphone in town, and he is starting to use it. there is a big message there, if they can control what will happen -- gain control, what will happen. >> i think harold is right. he can raise money, but that is about it. it is not like the government will swoop in and have a soluon to the school testing issue in alabama. you're just not geared that way, nor should we be, to have the president come in and fix issues. in the broader climate, he can help set the table. the speech yesterday in
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cleveland was outstanding. he went to cleveland, took on boehner by name, used the words "middle-class" 11 times. i love that. if there's anythinghat defines the democratic party, it is the middle-class. we are the partyf the middle class -- we are the party of the american dream. the republicans are not the party of no. i don't like it when democrats say that. it is just narcissism. it is not that they are against good ideas, it is that they are for ideas that would the country in the second term. we should put this on file. we should say that they are for privatizing social security, eliminating unemployment benefits. these people are crazy.
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they want to force their particular views on to our children on science. they don't believe in evolution or gravity are for the synthesis -- gravity or photosynthesis. [laughter] they have really extreme views. i think the media patronizes particularly tea party republicans. they don't vote, the parties on the upper west side -- they don't go to parties on the upper west side. i don't think we should demonize them, and we should not patronize them. how many jobs would be treated by the present meant it -- how many jobs would be created by privatizing social security? i know that people are upset
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right now, but they have no idea right now what republicans stand for, and that is on the part -- that is in part republicans' fault, but it is also democrats' fault. if you ask these candidates, they think that social security benefits are on constitutional -- unconstitutional. they think they violate the constitution. the senate candidate in nevada since they are violative of the first commandment. "thou shalt have no other gods but me" -- social security violates that?
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every democratic candidate should read that, because it is great. >> how can i add anything to was just said? [laughter] there is not much that the president can do. and the issues there are specific to the states and we do not want to federalize all the elections. the president can, exactly as paul said, set the table on who these folks are and create an atmosphere where we are more aggressively questioning what the other side is prosing and what they will do if elected. >> i will say this -- i agree with everything everyone has said. there is no question that this white house wants to do everything it can to win these governors races, and they understand the importance of everything the white house is trying to publish a the
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countries long-term prospects -- everything the white house is trying to accomplish and the country's long-term prospects. having said that, you cannot nationalize these races. when they try to nationalize the races, you should know it is because they cannot talk about local issues. everything the government is supposed to do, about economic development and all the things that republicans claim to be better at, they are worse at the federal level. when it comes to the employment rate, republicans, who brag about that, five of the states with the worst of a planned rights have republican governors. -- with the worst unemployment
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rates have republican governors. of the 10 worst economies, eight have republican governors. everything comes at a cost of an opportunity. this, i think, basically for fits their opportunity to talk about what voters really care about, which is jobs in the economy. >> last question is really short. it is election night, the states to watch thatyou are going to be focused on a in terms of how the light turns out -- how the light turns out with respect to governors, good or bad. >> think it comes down to the arkansas governor's race. [laughter] if we win that one, lights out for republicans. there are three reasons that 2010 is so important. the impact on the 2012 elections, and of course,
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redistricting. the state that captures that better than any is florida. you have a clear contrast between candidates at the state level. it is important to the presidential race and 2012. and it is going to undergo redistricting. and it is a state where the governor is central to the process. florida is not only a bellwether for the country is, but it will have a greater impact than any other state in the next 10 years. >> california, new york, florida, texas. if we win most or all of those, there will be more americans living under a democratic governors and then there are today. -- than there are today. >> texas is the most important state and always has been . georgia. i want to thank the republican voters of georgia for nominating
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a corruptashington congressman add a time when corrupt washington congressman are as popular as venereal disease. [laughter] just watch this -- how can we be this lucky? the republicans have put out a corrupt washington congressman in georgia, a pretty republican state these days. you might have a real chance of seeing a democrat sworn in as governor of georgia in what looks to be a pretty republican year. >> i don't have anything that. i don't have-- - anything that. -- to add. differents a very year. but sometimes happens is that we sisimplistically compare on
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election to a previous year's election. the notion of the d.c. as a gap -- of the enthusiasm gap is a critical element. it is a negative for democrats, but also a positive for democrats. voters are still winnable. this is not an election where people have moved lock, stock and barrel to republicans and it is done. i spent time last night, because i have nothing to do -- nothing better to do with my life, looking at exit polls f 2006. if it is true for 2006, it is more true now. the key thing for democrats, particularly at governors' races, but beyond, is to make the stark contrast, make a clear case, as to w they will
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lead the state for, and make clear the contrast between them and republicans. if that happens effectively, you will see a very different story line, in particular with governors' races. on that note, i will open it up to questions from the audience. who would like to ask a question fit? would you mind coming up? we have a mike right there, actually. >> "daily caller." i have a question for dee dee -- you talk about optimism. what reason do you see for optimism? you guys have been somewhat optimistic about some things from a political perspective, but from a borders perspective, how do you go out and talk but -- from a voter's perspective, how do you go out and talk about optimism?
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who would like to see when a nomination on the republican side? >> it is critical. you cannot go up there and just say, "we are in such deep doo doo and it is all over." i don't think that works as a campaign message. you have to talk about the future and what we can do collectively to build a better future -- investing in education and a green economy, whatever the issues are of the particular candidate. and why that translates into a brighter future. if you cannot sell a message that tomorrow is going to be better than today, if you cannot get people to believe that and get people to vote hopes instead of fears, democratic governors are not going to win. as for who i would like to run against t, i think it would be so fun to run against sarah palin. ?blast't that be a
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she is not really a politician, she is a performer. >> there is no one who faced rker times than franklin roosevelt. you think we have dark times now? it was tougher then. it was his optimism that partly carried the day. ronald reagan was known for his optimismn the face of a pretty rotten economy. >> 12 was a pretty grim time and he was able to win by being optimistic. >> it seems to me structurally that one of the biggest differences between running a campaign in 2010 compared to 1994 is the use of early voting.
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i'm wondering, particularly for nathan and harold, how does the enthusiasm gap played out in that? is it harder to get the ground game going in those circumstances? will that have more of an impact on democrats? >> you are right, the early voting is going to have a big impact. i am dubious of the whole notion of the nbc hasn't gap, because a -- i think -- of the enthusiasm gap, because it is more of aoise that. tea party members are more upset with republicans that they are with the democratic pay. the notion that there is some sort of overwhelming enthusiasm for the republican party, i
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don't think it is there. they are electing people who just don'tave infrastructures for his general election campaigns. in florida, i think we are going to out-organize republicans. i think this will come out to our advantage. >> i do think that the early voting poses some problems, but people not as enthusiastic about voting -- i am not sure how that is going to affect the early vote. it seems that the increase is in doubt i am concerned about is the -- that the enthusiasm gap i am concerned about is the turnout factor. there are 65 days left and the
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atmosphere can shift on this. people who may not vote early -- they still have a shot at voting before the polls close. >> susan page, "usa today." you say that presidents don't have that much to do with governor's elections, but when you think about congressional elections, what role did attides towards president and couldn't play in the 1994 election, compared to -- attitudes towards president clinton played in the 1994 election, compared to attitudes towards president obama this year? >> in 1994, the reasons were very different. the president failed with the democrats on hlth care, this president succeeded.
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did different things with the gun control, kay writes, -- gay rights, raise taxes, we p a chicken on the podium at the white house. but for the house races, this the biggest distinction. in 1994, do you know how many house republicans lost? zero. i think they were kind of targeting democrats that year, the voters. that is not going to happen. the anger is more diffuse, less partisan. it is ideological, but less partisan. what the president can do is the stuff he did yesterday, not just fire up the bay's, but framed the election and the choice. the republicans are much more extreme today.
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it is really extraordinary. the party of ronald reagan was more extreme than the party of richard nixon, and a party of newt gingrich was more extreme than the party of ronald, and the party of, who, palin? way more extreme than the rty of bush. republicans took power in 1995 and they tried to cut medicare peoplan pple freak out. they elected bill clinton. this is a way more conservative republican party. this president needs to use the agenda they have stated and make it the issue that the election is contested on, rather than his accomplishments. that is why yesterday's speech was so important.
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it was a pivot point awa from give me a gold star for my accomplishments, and to >> [inaudible] >> bill clinton was elected with 43%. he started from a position where there was a lot of skepticism toward him. as paul pointed out, we did a lot of really popular things, beginning with proposing letting gays serve openly in the military, which went really well. the biggest factors -- we were coming out of a recession. there was a sense of economic undies, although less so. the president's first budget, which raised taxes, it also cut spending and set the table for the next eight years of economic
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growth. people were angry and the republicans had a big, fat easy target. that and the failure of health care. president obama -- 9.6% unemployment, a huge spending to get out of what was almost the second great depression, it has cost him. they could have done a better job -- it's easy to sit here and say this -- of framing the heth care debate. i think that has become big target for republicans. between health-care, stimulus spending, much of which happened under the bush administration but obama is being blamed for, it's a tough environment. it is not as personal as it was with president clinton. his personal approval number were lower and people were not satisfied with him. with obama, people still like him, they're just not sure about his policies. >> next question over here.
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>> haley barbour was in town, talking about how these are going to turn the republicans out. is that a concern for you? do you have any candidates that ll drive democratic turnout in some of these states? could you talk what haoles governor races are going to tie into some of the senate and house races that are happening? >> did he actually say bill brady is going to turn people out in illinois? 60% of people don't know who h is. we already talked about calif. -- meg whitman has spent 200 times what jerry brown has spent to date -- to hundred to one. and the polls have a neck and
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neck. i find that hardo believe meg whitman will be able to generate swell for a candidacy that she has not been able to generate with the first $120 million. in a number of our states, we're going to generate a great deal of enthusiasm. one is the strength of our candidates and to is the republicans they are putting out. when we shine a light on them and talk about the stakes of this election, we will not only do what president obama shows we can do the war -- for shows the world will weaken do, but we can persuade independence. >> you have heard speculation about a potential government shutdown. dick morris proposes to conservative republicans at a recent conference. i wonder if you could speculate on that. i'm sure you think democrats will retain control, but should democrats talking about this more on the stump as a
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potential? >> iwould not talk about it on the stump because it is an abstraction. i would talk about the specifics -- social security, medicare, all those things they want to abolish. but should itome, to "the previous president, "beyond." independents particularly our the theoretical conservatives -- there against government spending, but there for teachers, more cops, for fire fighters, for social security -- would against to a specific, they like it. people are not running around holding up signs saying canceled veterans benefits. they're not saying unemployment benefits should stop. they're just saying as a general matter, i'm against spending. so republicans win when they say spending is bad. but when the democrat stands up
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and says what he means is abolish social security, abolish medicare, and veterans' benefits -- people say i don't mean that. the democrats just said another $26 million -- $26 billion to the states to keep cops and firefighters on the job. nobody in colorado is sayin i wish we had fewer firefighters in boulder. nobody is saying i wish my seventh grader was sitting in a class with 50 kids with headligh be as weak -- 50 kids with head lice because we should have fewer teachers. we should make it operational, not theoretical. >> thank you for coming. thank you to the panelists. [applause] [captioning performed by nation captioning institute] [captions copyrighnational cable satellite corp2010]